Petition calls for phase out of harmful plastic, PVC
NGOs have launched a petition calling for EU policymakers to phase out polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a type of plastic, due to the hazards it poses to people’s health and the environment.
PVC is used in a variety of different products, such as in construction materials, packaging, children’s toys, and medical applications. The petition – launched by EEB, Zero Waste Europe, the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL), Rethink Plastic, Health Care Without Harm, and ClientEarth – highlights that PVC is problematic at every stage of its lifecycle – during production, use and disposal:
- Workers and local communities can be exposed to highly hazardous chemicals that are released during production, including carcinogens. PVC production also requires high amounts of energy compared to other plastics.
- People can be exposed to harmful chemicals that are released from PVC products, such as phthalates. Drinking water can also be contaminated with harmful substances released from PVC plumbing.
- PVC presents problems when it is recycled or thrown away. It is very difficult to recycle, and harmful chemicals in PVC can contaminate the recycling stream. Harmful chemicals can also be emitted if PVC ends up in landfills or is incinerated.
The EU announced its plan to restrict PVC (and its additives) in 2022. CHEM Trust has joined other NGOs in calling for EU policymakers to develop a plan to fully phase out PVC by 2030. NGOs are also calling for the European Commission and EU Member States to demand a global ban of PVC under the new Global Plastics Treaty.
Click here to sign the petition. It is also available in Spanish and Portuguese.