The EU moves to restrict hormone-disrupting chemical found in plastics
The European chemicals agency (Echa) voted unanimously that bisphenol A (BPA) is an endocrine disruptor, linking it to many health conditions including cancer, learning difficulties and diabetes. BPA has previously been linked to problems and toxicity for reproductive health.
Originally developed as a synthetic mimic of the female sex hormone, oestrogen, it was used as an industrial chemical and in 1957 was polymerised with phosgene to produce what is known today as polycarbonate.
Green groups including ClientEarth welcomed the historic ruling that has finally recognised BPA's threat to health. "Now BPA is finally recognised as an endocrine disruptor, The EU and national governments must act fast to limit the irreversible damage this chemical does to people and the environment," said ClientEarth's lawyer Alice Bernard.
The European chemicals agency (Echa) is now expected to recommend constraints on BPA's use under the EU's Reach Regulation as early as next year.