Hormones secreted by the endocrine system are responsible for regulating a number of functions within the body. Growth, metabolism, cognition, mood, and reproduction are only a few of the biological behaviors that hormones affect. Over 800 different substances – either chemicals or mixtures of chemicals – have been shown to interfere with hormone signaling and earned them the title “Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals” (EDCs). Currently, EDCs can be found in countless products from building materials to furniture, cosmetics to baby toys to food.
CIEL is committed to reducing and ultimately eliminating exposure to Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals. EDC exposure, particularly at early stages of development, has been linked to diseases such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism, and impaired reproductive systems later in life. It is therefore imperative to bring the impacts EDCs have on human and environmental health to the forefront of global attention. At the third session of the International Conference on Chemical Management (ICCM3), in September 2013, CIEL was among the many participants responsible for the ultimate installation EDCs as an “issue of global concern” under the Strategic Approach to International Chemical Management (SAICM). When in June 2016 the European Commission proposed draft criteria to identify endocrine disruptors, CIEL demanded the criteria be strengthened to ensure a high level of protection for human health and the environment.
CIEL is a co-founder of the EDC-Free Europe coalition, gathering more than 65 organizations including trade unions, consumers, women’s groups, public health and healthcare professionals working on stopping EDC exposure.