A social media campaign, #MyClosestEnemy, warns about purchasing personal care products like tampons and baby diapers that have been bleached with chlorine dioxide. Rune Leithe, former Greenpeace campaigner and initiator of the campaign, has already collected 20,000 signatures on a petition. He is appealing to large EU retail chains to stop the sale of the problematic products and to shift production to chlorine-free alternatives.
The background of the criticism is a report, Tampon, Our Closest Enemy, by French journalist Audrey Gloaguen. In the document, he emphasizes that tampons bleached with chlorine dioxide can contain toxic dioxins. That’s why the WHO has classified these products as hazardous.
Leithe published the related figures on his Web site. He indicates that most women will use about 11,000 tampons and pads during their lifetimes, which leads to a high exposure to carcinogenic dioxins. According to Leithe, manufacturers are not legally required to indicate the presence of these hazardous and other chemicals on their product packaging.
Most types of diapers are also criticized. French agencies have reacted to a report from the French Agency for Food, Environment and Occupational Health and Safety (ANSES) and have urged manufacturers to examine their production processes and monitor their raw materials more closely. We reported on this report in an earlier article.
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