Food Law News - EU - 2000

EP Daily Notebook, 14 December 2000

PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE - Precautionary principle needs to be clarified.

Report on the Commission communication on the precautionary principle (Doc.: A5-0352/2000)

The EU's approach to the use of the precautionary principle should be clarified, states this resolution, and not only in the light of current developments on the BSE front. The resolution also emphasises the need for a well-balanced position in which risks are considered on a case-by-case basis. The House was voting on a Commission communication on the issue of the precautionary principle.

Parliament calls on the Council of Ministers to adopt a resolution on the EU's approach to using the precautionary principle by the end of this year. It wants clearer guidelines on the application of the principle, believing it should be invoked whenever a provisional objective scientific evaluation of the risks shows that there are justified fears of potentially dangerous effects on the environment or human, animal or plant health that are incompatible with a sufficiently high level of protection of the Community. Parliament's resolution covers not only the definition and scope of the precautionary principle, but also risk assessment, risk management and the burden of proof.

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