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Chemicals out of control

Governments and industry have failed tocontrol the spread of dangerous chemicals around the globe. Sowidespread are manmade hazardous chemicals in our environment, in ourhomes and in the products we use every day, that we are constantlyexposed to a cocktail of chemicals. As a result, even our own bodiesare contaminated.

Moda sin Toxicos

High fashion isn't normally known for being held in high regard amongenvironmentalists. But some big names and big brands in fashion havegotten together with us to put on a toxics-freefashion show. The clothes we wear, no matter how expensive,shouldn't cost the Earth.

In our environment:

It nowseems that no part of the planet is free from chemical contamination.Research shows that fish and whales caught hundreds of kms offshore,and in remote areas such as Alpine lakes and the polar regions, despitebeing far from any industry, are no longer pristine. Rainwater inEurope has been shown to be polluted with the hazardous chemicals thatare added to consumer products. A recent study has found that eels infreshwater ecosystems across Europe are contaminated, raising concernfor the impact on this once abundant species whose numbers now are inrapid decline.

In our homes:

Our testing hasfound that house dust in homes across Europe is contaminated withhazardous manmade chemicals. Chemicals that are added to ordinaryhousehold products (including carpets and other furnishings, electricaland electronic goods, toys and childcare articles, etc.) can bereleased over time, accumulating in the dust in our homes. Chemicals insuch products are rarely labelled and you probably don't realise theyare there. Bringing these chemicals via consumer products into ourhomes leads to a repeated and long-term exposure to low doses of thesecontaminants.

In our products:

Hazardouschemicals are intentionally added to consumer products that we useevery day. Electronics, toys, shampoos, perfumes, furniture, even babies' pyjamas, can all contain substances with the potential to harmhealth and development. We have tested a wide range of these productsfor hazardous chemicals. You can read the results of our testing anddiscover which brands contain the most toxic substances on our ChemicalHome website.

In our bodies:

Analyses ofumbilical cord blood have confirmed the presence of hazardous chemicalsin humans at the very start of life, indicating that chemicals releasedtoday could have profound consequences for the next generation. Thisproves that chemicals released into our environment may have an impacton future generations. No one knows how many man-made chemicalscontaminate our bodies but more than 100 is a conservative estimate. Sogreat is the number of chemicals all around us that we're constantlyexposed to multiple doses, the combined effect of which could beimpacting our health. This effect of chemicals in our bodies, includingin our blood, is largely unknown. There's particular concern about therisks to children and babies, since they are the most vulnerable, andbecause some of these hazardous chemicals are known to affect thedevelopment of babies inside the womb.


The European Union has approved a new chemical law to replaceregulation that is over 40 years old. But the new EU chemicalslegislation (REACH) is in critical condition. Read more analysis or a guide to how you can help strengthen the new law.

We are campaigning for solutions. We believe that politicians must takeaction and require companies to stop using hazardous chemicals and tosubstitute them with safer alternatives whenever and wherever possible.

The latest updates

 

Why is H&M burning new clothes?

Blog entry by Kirsten Brodde | 7 November, 2017

Journalists in Denmark have  revealed  that H&M are burning new clothes. Since 2013,  12 tonnes of clothing  has been burned per year in Denmark alone. You might remember that H&M has been heavily promoting its recycling...

How green is your tech?

Blog entry by Gary Cook | 17 October, 2017

Do you know how this device, the one you are reading on right now, got into your hand or onto your desk? While it probably came out of a pretty box, if you could look through this screen back through the steps involved in making...

5 ways tech companies are making your devices die too soon

Blog entry by Elizabeth Jardim | 27 June, 2017 1 comment

Imagine a world where your electronic gadgets would last, or a place where your devices could be easily repaired. Imagine all the money saved!   ...But we know that world is purely imaginary, because unfortunately, the...

You did it! Samsung will finally recycle millions of Galaxy Note 7s

Blog entry by Jude Lee | 27 March, 2017

Remember when we did this… Greenpeace activists create satirical scenes to show the explosion of the Galaxy Note 7 as well as how the device can be recycled at the front gate of the Samsung Electronics’ headquarters in Suwon. ...

Samsung, the clock is ticking

Blog entry by Robin Perkins | 22 March, 2017

Galaxy Note7 is the most talked about phone release in years — unfortunately for Samsung however, for the wrong reasons. Anyone travelling on a plane since November anywhere in the world will have heard about the overheating issues...

Biological Restoration of water and land

Blog entry by Rex Weyler | 10 March, 2017

According to the 2015 World Economic Forum Global Risks 2015 Report, the water crisis is the world’s #1 risk. The problem is not only the amount of water available in the world’s rivers, lakes, and aquifers, but the pollution of...

2016 – The year in photos

Blog entry by Maïa Booker | 22 December, 2016

2016 was a challenging year for people and the planet. It brought many challenges that will continue in the year ahead – a changing climate, greedy corporations and politicians whose policies spell trouble for the planet. As we look...

Bring it on, 2017: New Year’s resolutions for people and the planet

Blog entry by Dawn Bickett | 20 December, 2016 2 comments

For many of us who care about the environment and about people, 2016 has been a punch to the gut. Politicians and corporations at odds with issues like human rights and a healthy planet have managed to grab power in countries all over...

“It's about the people, not about the products” - the faces of PFC pollution

Blog entry by Elske Krikhaar and Jeffrey Dugas | 15 November, 2016

Elske Krikhaar, Greenpeace International The first thing that went through my mind as I entered Jan and Ineke van Genderen’s living room was how close the DuPont/Chemours facility was. I could almost see it from the window. It is...

Citizen science in action: open-source air pollution monitoring in Bulgaria

Blog entry by Teodora Stoyanova | 14 November, 2016

Every day, we breathe in between 15,000 and 20,000 litres of air – enough to fill three hot air balloons in a year. This precious substance is made up of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen and 1% carbon dioxide. But what else is in the air we...

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