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IPEN

A Toxics-Free Future

EU Commission faces legal challenge over approval of toxic paints

While the world is celebrating the International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week of Action, the European Commission (EC) is being challenged on its recent decision to authorize Dominion Colour Corporation to supply red and yellow lead chromate pigments for use in the EU in so-called industrial paint.

Lead chromates are composed of lead, a neurotoxin which harms the nervous system, and chromium, a carcinogen causing lung tumours. Children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure and the health effects are generally irreversible and have a lifelong impact. Lead chromates are also extremely toxic to aquatic life. The use of these toxic paint components has been abandoned for decades in many EU countries and many paint companies have publicly stated that safer alternatives do exist and that they have been using them for years.   ClientEarth, the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), The International Chemical Secretariat (ChemSec) and IPEN have joined forces to question the legality of the Commission’s decision by submitting a formal request for internal review of the decision. The Commission now has 12 weeks to reply to the legal challenge. If its response is unsatisfactory, the case will be taken to the European Court of Justice.

Read the IPEN Press Release here

Press Release