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The Top 20
Consuming Chemicals
Hazardous Chemicals in house dust as an
indicator of chemical exposure in the home

By Greenpeace

Consuming Chemicals
"Manufactured chemicals are widespread in the air, soil, water sediments and biota of Europe's environment following the marketing of up to 100 000 chemicals in the EU, their use and disposal and degradation. There is a serious lack of monitoring and information on these chemicals…widespread exposures to low doses of chemicals may be causing harm, possibly irreversibly, particularly to sensitive groups such as children and pregnant women…"
European Environment Agency (1998).

Chemicals in Europe

Current regulation of chemical production and use in Europe is weak, cumbersome and ineffective. This has led to a situation in which there are very few data on the great majority of the thousands of chemicals currently used by industry, and next to nothing is known about their potential environmental and human health impacts. According to the European Commission;

“The lack of knowledge about the impacts of many chemicals on human health and the environment is a cause for concern…understandably the public is worried when hearing about the exposure of their children to certain phthalates released from toys and about increasing amounts of the flame retardant pentabromo diphenyl ether in human breast milk...legislative action takes too long before yielding results."  European Commission (2001)

The data presented in this report shows just how serious and widespread the problem of chemical contamination is. This contamination is not just of the environment “out there”. It affects our homes, our offices, our daily lives. Moreover the pollutants we have targetted for investigation are not coming from traffic fumes, industrial chimneys or pesticides. They are brought into our homes as unseen and unlabeled chemical additives in everyday consumer products.

How To Get A Copy

Click Here for a Copy of this 74 Page PDF Document

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