European Parliament
Environment and Health Action Plan

(03/09) via JS

In its mid-term review the European Parliament adopted, by 522 votes to 16, with seven abstentions, a resolution incorporating the following good intentions:

• The Parliament declares that the EU needs to acquire specific expertise on environmental health, to be based on transparency and on a multidisciplinary and adversarial approach which would thus enable the general public's distrust of official agencies and committees of experts to be countered....

• Although there have been genuine advances in environmental policy in recent years.... EU policy still lacks a comprehensive preventive strategy and fails to apply the precautionary principle.

• The Parliament stresses that, when it comes to assessing the impact of environmental factors on health, consideration should be given first and foremost to vulnerable groups such as pregnant women, newborn babies, children and the elderly. Those who are the most susceptible to pollutants should be protected by specific measures to reduce exposure to indoor environmental contaminants in healthcare facilities and schools.

• The Parliament calls on the Commission to draft appropriate minimum requirements to guarantee the quality of indoor air in buildings to be newly built bearing in mind the quality of indoor air, exposure to electromagnetic radiation and the health of particularly vulnerable sections of the population. It also calls for environmental quality standards for priority substances in water to be laid down.

• The Parliament is concerned about the lack of specific legal provisions to ensure the safety of consumer products containing nanoparticles being put on the market.

• And the Parliament is greatly concerned at the Bio-Initiative
international report on electro- magnetic fields (, which highlights the health risks posed by emissions from mobile-telephony devices such as mobile telephones, UMTS, Wifi, Wimax and Bluetooth, and also DECT landline telephones. It notes, in this respect, that the limits on exposure to electromagnetic fields which have been set for the general public are obsolete. They do not take account of developments in information and communication technologies or vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women, newborn babies and children. It therefore calls on the Council to set stricter exposure limits for all equipment which emits electromagnetic waves in the frequencies between 0.1 MHz and 300 GHz.

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03/09 via jS


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