We hosted this toxic-free catwalk featuring products by companies that are setting positive examples. We wanted to show the importance of strong laws on chemicals, and how responsible companies have already demonstrated change is possible. We invited European Union (EU) politicians who are currently discussing new laws on chemicals in Europe. The chemical industry and irresponsible companies are lobbying hard against strong chemical law to protect human health and the environment. They claim it will be too expensive and impractical to change. Our toxic free catwalk dispelled that myth in style!
Organised by Greenpeace, the "Substitute with Style" catwalk
show will showcase the steps being taken by major consumer brands
to stop using hazardous chemicals in a wide range of products,
including clothing, cosmetics and even DVD-players and shower
Companies participating in tomorrow night's show include
clothing retailers Hennes & Mauritz and Marks and Spencer,
sportswear label Reebok, electronic goods multinationals Sony and
Sony Ericsson, furniture giant IKEA, and ecological firms Ecover
(detergents and cleaning products), Lavera (cosmetics) and Ethic
Wear (organic clothing).
Helen Perivier of Greenpeace International said: "Progressive
and innovative companies are taking direct action to remove
hazardous chemicals from their products. Substitute With Style is a
fun event designed to inspire EU politicians with the evidence that
substitution of toxic chemicals is the way forward for Europe's
health, environment and industry. A substitution requirement should
be at the heart of the new chemicals regulation, which the European
Parliament and Council will vote on later this year."
The catwalk will show TVs and mobile phones from which
brominated flame retardants have been eliminated, Marks and Spencer
kids' T-shirts which do not contain phthalates, and trainers by
Reebok that are free of PVC.
Recent research commissioned by Greenpeace* has confirmed the
growing scientific evidence that man made hazardous chemicals are
prevalent in everything from television sets and running shoes to
house dust, rainwater and blood.
The proposed EU chemicals policy (REACH) is designed to regulate
the use of such chemicals, in the interest of protecting human
health and the environment.
"The consumer brands in our catwalk are the most responsive to
public concern about health and the environment, and they clearly
demonstrate that substitution is possible and already happening.
But many industrial sectors are making no such efforts to stop
using toxic chemicals," said Nadia Haiama-Neurohr of Greenpeace
European Unit. "There needs to be a strong legal requirement to
substitute, to create the dynamism needed to trigger eco-innovation
and further research into safer substances."
Other contacts: Press contact for catwalk show: Katharine Mill, tel 02 274 1903Contact on Greenpeace chemicals campaign: Helen Perivier, Greenpeace International toxics campaigner, tel 02 274 1905For information about REACH, contact Nadia Haiama-Neurohr, Greenpeace European Unit chemicals policy adviser, tel 02 274 1913
Notes: For Greenpeace reports on chemicals in consumer products and the environment, see Greenpeace International Chemicals webpageThe REACH Regulation stands for the Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals. It was proposed by the European Commission in October 2003.
Exp. contact date: 2005-05-08 00:00:00