The gaps between science and legislation - a high-level panel discussion
With the terms of the current European Parliament and Commission slowly coming to an end there are significant concerns that the REACH revision will not be completed in time or that the revision will be rushed through, therefore not leading to the overhaul that is needed to bring the legislation in line with the latest scientific findings. If REACH is not addressed during this legislative term, this could endanger any real progress in EU chemicals legislation for years to come as it is impossible to predict what priorities the next European Commission, European Parliament and Council will have.
In addition to revising the overarching legislation, there are several ongoing consultations and political debates within the existing REACH framework around restriction of groups of chemicals including PFAS and Bisphenols. Banning or minimising the presence of these groups of chemicals could significantly contribute to reducing the onset of endocrine and other diseases.
The meeting will bring together a broad variety of stakeholders to discuss the importance of an ambitious REACH revision while discussing progressing and remaining challenges in other areas including CLP, PFAS and Bisphenols. Leading European experts will present the latest available science and give special attention to vulnerable groups in our society with a focus on women and children as the impact of endocrine disruptors on these two specific groups has not been sufficiently highlighted in the ongoing EU debate.
The panel discussion, moderated by Sue Saville, will mainly centre around REACH and the difference a timely and ambitious revision could make for European public health. Among many other topics, the panel members will discuss the position of the different EU institutions towards REACH and revisit a recent Petition as well as an Open Letter by ESE and its partners urging the European Commission to publish an ambitious proposal now. Initiatives by patient organisations and civil society in relation to REACH or other topics in the area of endocrine disruptors will also be discussed in more detail.
14:00 – 14:05 Welcome remarks - MEP Sirpa Pietikäinen (EPP, Finland)
14:05 – 14:15 Key note speech - EU Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries - Virginijus Sinkevičius (TBC)
14:15 – 14:35 State of the science: what do we know already?
- Paediatric perspective: Prof Dr Anders Juul (Rigshospitalet & University of Copenhagen)
- Adult perspective: Prof Dr Robin Peeters (Erasmus University)
14:35 – 15:25 Panel Discussion
Moderator: Ms Sue Saville
- MEP Maria Spyraki (EPP, Greece) (TBC) – EDC impact on Europe, the EPP perspective
- Prof Pauliina Damdimopoulou (Karolinska Institute) – Women and EDCs
- European Commission (TBC) – The commission is taking action to minimise EDC presence in our environment
- Don Oscar González Sánchez (Spanish Ministry of Environment) (TBC) – Spain’s route towards a toxic-free environment
- Prof Dr Anders Juul (Rigshospitalet & University of Copenhagen) – children and EDCs, what makes this group extra vulnerable?
15:25 – 15:30 Concluding remarks - MEP Martin Hojsík (Renew Europe, Slovakia)
15:30 – 16:00 – Cocktail and Networking
- ESE: The European Society of Endocrinology (ESE) provides a platform to develop and share leading research and best knowledge in endocrine science and medicine. By uniting and representing every part of the endocrine community, we are best placed to improve the lives of patients. Through the 51 National Societies involved with the ESE Council of Affiliated Societies (ECAS) ESE represents a community of over 20,000 European endocrinologists. We inform policy makers on health decisions at the highest level through advocacy efforts across Europe.
- Endocrine Society: Founded in 1916, the Endocrine Society is the world’s oldest, largest, and most active organization dedicated to research on hormones and the clinical practice of endocrinology. Our global membership of over 18,000 includes expert researchers advancing our understanding of interference with hormonal systems by manufactured chemicals, called endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).
- About the European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology: The European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology (ESPE) is an international society based in Europe that promotes the highest levels of clinical care for infants, children and adolescents with endocrine problems throughout the world, including in less advantaged areas. Our mission is to advance excellence in paediatric endocrinology and diabetes by promoting research, education and medical practice to the benefit of child and adolescent health throughout the world.
- ETA: About the European Thyroid Association The European Thyroid Association (ETA) is a scientific organization, which aims to promote clinical and basic research and raise the standards of understanding and clinical practice in thyroid disease. The Association was founded in 1965 and has met each year since then, with the exception of the years in which the International Thyroid Congress has been held. The Annual Scientific Meeting regularly attracts more than 350 abstracts and over 900 active participants. Membership of the Association consists of honorary, ordinary, junior, corporate, corresponding and emeritus. There are over 800 members