Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are chemicals that affect hormones in humans and wildlife in a negative way. Unfortunately, these chemicals are found almost everywhere. They are present in many everyday products, for example soft plastics, electronics, textiles and cosmetic products. Even though the negative effects of EDCs are well-known, decision-makers struggle to regulate them effectively. In fact, only a handful of the known EDC substances have been identified and listed on the EU Candidate List, which is the first step towards restricting a harmful chemical. Since there are many more out there that should also be regulated, ChemSec identified an additional 32 EDCs that fulfill the EU criteria for inclusion on the list.
To protect human health and the environment and to stay ahead of regulation, it is important for companies to take a proactive approach and start phasing out EDCs from their products and processes immediately. ChemSec has therefore developed a flow chart consisting of a four-step process to get the substitution work started. The flow chart includes practical questions that will improve companies’ chemicals management and guide them towards the use of safer chemicals instead of EDCs.