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Health and environment

 

Parliament vetoes energy drink “alertness” claims

Plenary Session Public health07-07-2016 - 12:55

EU Commission plans to allow claims that sugary drinks and energy drinks containing caffeine boost “alertness” or “concentration” were vetoed by the European Parliament on Thursday. Displaying these claims on drinks cans would have led to higher sugar consumption among adolescents, who are the largest group of energy drink consumers, said MEPs in their resolution. (Read more: Parliament vetoes energy drink “alertness” claims )

 

Parliament backs emission curbs for off-road machinery

Plenary Session Environment05-07-2016 - 13:46
A snow groomer machine ©AP Images/ European Union-EP  

Plans to update EU type approval rules and emission limits for internal combustion engines in non-road mobile machinery (NRMM), such as lawn mowers, bulldozers, diesel locomotives and inland waterway vessels, were backed by MEPs on Wednesday. These plans had already been agreed informally with the Dutch Presidency of the Council. NRMM engines account for about 15% of all NOx and 5% of particulate emissions in the EU. (Read more: Parliament backs emission curbs for off-road machinery )

 

Air quality legislation: MEPs strike deal with Council

ENVI Environment01-07-2016 - 16:58

Plans for more ambitious national caps on emissions of key pollutants by 2030, including NOx, particulates and sulphur dioxide, were informally agreed by MEPs and the Dutch presidency of the Council on Thursday. Air pollution causes about 400,000 premature deaths in the EU per year. The agreement now needs to be endorsed by the Environment Committee and Parliament as a whole. (Read more: Air quality legislation: MEPs strike deal with Council )

 

Draft plans to tighten up official controls from farm to fork were informally agreed by food safety MEPs and the Dutch Presidency of the Council on Wednesday. It aims to guarantee that the food consumers buy and eat in Europe is safe and wholesome, hence improving consumer’s health and preventing food crises. (Read more: MEPs and ministers agree to beef up official food checks from farm to fork )

 
Close up of hand holding silicon breast implant  

Plans for stricter monitoring and certification procedures to ensure full compliance and traceability of medical devices, such as breast or hip implants, were backed by Health Committee MEPs on Wednesday. MEPs also approved legislation to tighten up information and ethical requirements for diagnostic medical devices used for example in pregnancy or DNA testing. Both files were informally agreed with the Dutch Presidency of the Council. (Read more: Medical devices: Health Committee MEPs approve stricter EU safety requirements )

 

Sugary drinks and energy drinks containing caffeine should not display claims that they help increase alertness or concentration, as this would encourage high consumption of sugar among adolescents, who are the largest group of energy drink consumers, said Health committee MEPs in a resolution voted on Wednesday. (Read more: Health Committee MEPs ask Parliament to veto energy drink “alertness” claims )

 
 

Should energy and sugary drinks be allowed to claim on their labels that the caffeine in them boosts alertness and concentration? Parliament's public health and food safety committee fears this could affect children and teenagers, who are the main consumers of energy drinks. On Wednesday 15 June, committee members discuss whether to vote against a European Commission proposal allowing this. We talked to Christel Schaldemose, in charge of steering the plans through Parliament, why she opposes it. (Read more: Schaldemose: "Energy drinks shouldn't have any kind of health claims on them" )

 

Parliament objects to herbicide-resistant GM carnation and maize authorisations

Plenary Session Public health08-06-2016 - 13:58

The EU Commission should withdraw its authorisations for the use of herbicide-resistant GM carnations and maize, say two non-binding resolutions voted on Wednesday. Authorising GM carnations would encourage the worldwide use of a diabetes medicine as a herbicide, while the GM maize is resistant to glyphosate, which is classified as “probably carcinogenic” by the World Health Organisation (WHO), MEPs say. (Read more: Parliament objects to herbicide-resistant GM carnation and maize authorisations )

 

MEPs condemn Commission delays in clamping down on hormone-disrupting chemicals

Plenary Session Public health08-06-2016 - 13:47

European Commission delays in publishing the scientific criteria needed to identify and reduce exposure to hormone-disrupting chemicals, which the UNEP/WHO sees as a global threat to public health, were condemned by Parliament in in a resolution voted on Wednesday. The text, on “endocrine disruptors”, points out that the Commission’s persistent failure to publish the criteria, which were due by the end of 2013, also breaches EU law. (Read more: MEPs condemn Commission delays in clamping down on hormone-disrupting chemicals )

 

Safer medical devices: MEPs strike deal with Council

ENVI Public health26-05-2016 - 15:48

Plans for stricter monitoring and certification procedures to ensure that medical devices such as breast or hip implants comply fully with safety and traceability requirements were informally agreed by MEPs and the Dutch Presidency of the Council on Wednesday. MEPs also secured tighter information and ethical requirements for diagnostic medical devices, e.g. those used for pregnancy or DNA testing. (Read more: Safer medical devices: MEPs strike deal with Council )