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News|16 Jun, 2011

First vote of the EU Parliament to restrict phosphates in dishwashing detergents

phosphates in dishwashing detergents
Algae bloom indicating signs of eutrophication, Danube old arm, Szigetkozi Nature Reserve. HungaryProject number: HU0014Project number: 9E0060

Brussels/Belgium – On 15 June the European Parliament’s Environment Committee voted with significant majority (51 out of 60), that the restrictions on the use of phosphates in laundry detergents proposed by the EU Commission should be extended to dish washing detergents as of 2015. WWF welcomes this decision, and calls on the EU Parliament to back the Committee’s position in its plenary vote in September.

Sergey Moroz, Freshwater Policy Officer at WWF European Policy Office said:

“Detergents with high concentrations of phosphates, whilst making our dishes shiny, contribute to a massive growth of algae in our rivers, lakes and seas, that cause the rapid dying out of all living water organisms like fish, and other water life. This has transformed vast areas of the Baltic and Black Seas into dead zones.”

“Phosphate-free detergents already exist and are widely used in many Member States. They are effective and less polluting.  A Pan-European restriction on phosphates in both laundry and dish washing detergents would not only benefit the environment, but it will create a level-playing field for manufacturers and reduce waste water treatment costs in the order of 10 to 693 million euros per year”.


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