PRESS RELEASE – Brussels, 2 April 2009
Commenting on the European Parliament vote on the Tatarella report regarding the eco-label scheme (1), Finnish Green MEP Satu Hassi, a member of the European Parliament’s environment committee, commented:
“I am pleased that the credibility of the eco-label scheme has been re-established in the agreement between Council and the European Parliament.
“The European Parliament successfully insisted on reintroducing exclusion criteria for toxic substances from the future eco-label, subject to specific derogations.
“Nothing would undermine the eco-label’s credibility more than to award it to products containing toxic substances that can be replaced with alternatives – especially when the hazardous substances have already been banned in other products.
“I hope that the chemical and metal industries have finally understood that the eco-label should be a mark of excellence, not a reward for complying with the bare minimum standards of legislation such as REACH.
“Products continue to contain carcinogenic substances or those that are persistent and bioaccumulative when safer alternatives are available. These should be taken off the market, not rewarded with eco-labels.
“I am also satisfied that we will await the results of a feasibility study before extending the scope of the eco-label to food products. We must avoid any confusion with existing labels for organic food. At the same time, I strongly support that food products, including fishery products, are not only assessed with regard to their production process, but also with regard to other environmental issues such as transport.”
(1) Co-decision procedure, first reading agreement, EP votes: 629 for/19 against/4 abstentions