Like the United States, the European Union (EU) signed the new mercury treaty, the Minamata Convention on Mercury. But unlike the United States, the EU government asked the general public to comment on how to fulfill the EU’s treaty obligations. The European Commission launched an online public consultation that asked EU citizens: Should we phase down amalgam use…or should we phase out amalgam use?
Now the votes have been counted! And the people of the European Union voted to….
Congratulations to all our European friends who voted and to everyone around the world who helped get out the vote!
Over the past four years, Consumers for Dental Choice has worked closely with our European allies to put in place the building blocks that led to this vote:
- The scientific backing: The EU governments’ scientific committees agree that amalgam in the environment can pose a risk while mercury-free fillings are safe.
- The policy edge: The European Commission hired an independent consultant to examine all the policy options for dealing with amalgam. After an intense study, a round of public hearings, and substantial public input, that independent consultant urged the EU to “ban the use of mercury in dentistry.”
- The public support: The consultant, the governments, and the scientists had their turn. Then the matter was put before the citizenry… and Europeans overwhelmingly want to phase out amalgam use!
As the EU moves forward toward mercury-free dentistry, the United States government is no doubt taking note… and seeing itself fall behind. If the United States intends to regain the lead on mercury issues, now is the time to act.
8 May 2015