Following the European Commission's Communication published in response to the European Citizens' Initiative "Stop Vivisection", the JRC's Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL ECVAM) has launched a public survey to solicit input from individuals and organisations to identify all types of knowledge sources that might be relevant for Replacing, Reducing or Refining (the '3Rs') the use of animals for scientific purposes.
Green Party in Northern Ireland urged publicly-funded universities and medical schools in Northern Ireland to halt testing animals – especially when only 3% of experiments carried on them have been really required by regulators. As Cruelty Free International investigated – approximately 20 000 animal experiments have dubious scientific values for humans. Additionally, the number of laboratory tests on dogs was dramatically increased by up 113%. Moreover, Steven Agnew from Green Party in Northern Ireland urged the universities to invest in alternative testing instead of animal one. The official statement of the spokesperson of Queen’s University was “Queen’s conduct research on animals only when it is absolutely essential for clinical, biomedical and environmental studies and where there are no alternatives”. Unfortunately, a dilemma of suffering animals is still remaining unsolved. However, the European Citizen Initiative (ECI) unveiled a negative sentiment of Europeans regarding animal testing. The ECI clearly stated that Europeans want policy makers to phase out animal testing. In Northern Ireland in 2014 and 2015 about 1 000 animals are intentionally subjected to experiments estimated as causing severe suffering and next 5 513 animals to moderate suffering.
In its decision "Decision in case 1606/2013/AN on how the European Chemicals Agency applies rules concerning animal testing" of 11 September 2015, the European Ombudsman estimated that the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) did not take into account the fact that the avoidance of animal testing was, together with the protection of human health and the environment, one of the guiding principles of the Regulation.
The decision follows up a complaint made by the European Coalition to End Animal Experiments, concerns the position of the ECHA refusing to reject animal testing when data could be generated by an alternative method not involving animal tests.
The Commission on the Stop Vivisection ECI: “With the goal of phasing out animal testing, Directive 2010/63/EU is still needed to protect the animals currently in laboratories”
The European Commission stresses the importance of Directive 2010/63/EU to guard animals
The European Commission released today, June 3rd 2015, a communication in response to the European Citizens’ Initiative “Stop Vivisection”. The Initiative was brought by 1.173.130 concerned citizens throughout the EU, and called for the repeal of Directive 2010/63 on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes, in order to cease animal experimentation. The European Commission, after a thorough examination of the situation, decided to keep the current legislation. Major experts, who have been working on this field for decades, have come together and stressed that, while working towards the goal of full replacement of animals, Directive 2010/63/EU is an indispensable tool to protect those animals still in use. Science is not yet developed enough to work effectively in all areas without animal testing, and while its progress makes major steps in that direction, a legislation protecting those animals currently in use is indispensible.
The Commission highlighted its next steps towards the goal of ceasing animal experimentation: it will stay in close dialogue with the scientific community at both EU and international level to identify alternative test methods, organise a conference by end 2016 on how to advance towards the goal of phasing out animal testing, and actively monitor compliance with Directive 2010/63/EU. Not only will these actions be put in place, but also the Europen Commission will cooperate at the international level with several countries worldwide within the framework of the International Cooperation on Alternative Test Methods (ICATM) and the International Collaboration on Cosmetics Regulation (ICCR).
All winds are favourable for the sailor who knows where to go.
More information is available on: http://ec.europa.eu/citizens-initiative/public/documents/43
Whale hunting in the Faroe Islands – E-009281/2014
Given this situation in the Faroe Islands, what can the Commission do to put an end to this despicable massacre once and for all?
Wildlife injuries from harvesters – E-010075/2014
What can the Commission do to address this problem? 2. Will the Commission finance a project group to investigate the problem and come up with possible solutions? 3. What possibilities exist to fund such a project?
Legality of capturing birds to be used as live decoys by hunters – E-009061/2014
In the light of the EU legislation governing this issue, the substance of the two orders referred to above, the Court of Justice’s findings in its judgment in Case C‐182/02 and the guidance document on hunting under Council Directive 79/409/EEC on the conservation of wild birds, in particular paragraph 3.5.22 and the footnotes thereto, can the Commission say:
1. whether it is aware of the above orders?
2. what importance it considers should be attached to these orders for the purposes of correctly applying the Birds Directive, bearing in mind the need to observe the principle of subsidiarity?
Revision of European legislation on finning – E-009767/2014
1. Will the Commission revise the current legislation so as to enable the finning ban to be enforced in a way geared more closely to the sector’s needs as well as complying with the requirements of international law?
2. How has the fleet been helped to implement this legislation?
3. In view of the unfair competition, is the Commission providing compensation?
By-catch of deep-sea sharks, zero TAC and conservation measures – E-010864/2014
In view of the above, I ask the Commission for information on the following:
1. Is it intending to insist on maintaining a zero TAC for these species? What evidence does it have pointing to the appropriateness of a measure of this kind and confirming that a benefit for the resource will result?
2. Does it not think that the possibility of permitting by-catch of deep-sea sharks up to a set limit would encourage better understanding of the species in question, population numbers and reproduction strategies, so that more appropriate conservation measures can be devised?
Ban on circus animals – E-009108/2014
Can the Commission clarify what actions have been taken by other Member States with regard to the ban on circus animals?
Illegal wildlife trade – E-009106/2014 and E-009559/2014
12 Nov. 2014, Marlene Mizzi (S&D) and 20 Nov. 2014, Marc Tarabella (S&D)
1. What concrete plans does the Commission have to combat the illegal wildlife trade?
2. Does the Commission consider it an urgent need to establish a global action plan to tackle the illegal wildlife trade?
What initiatives does the new Commission propose taking in order to advance the formulation of the action plan requested by the European Parliament?
Sale of seal products – E-009544/2014
How does the Commission propose to ensure that the Convention on Biological Diversity and the principle of sustainable use are respected in the future by permitting trade in seal products from Sweden?
EU labelling, mandatory country of origin – E-009311/2014
14 Nov. 2014, Siôn Simon (S&D)
“Does the Commission have any plans to extend mandatory country of origin labelling to other agricultural and processed meat products?”
Origin labelling – E-008915/2014
7 November 2014, Marc Tarabella (S&D)
1. What is the Commission’s position on this?
2. Could it follow the matter up, and, if these figures are confirmed, guarantee that it will set up a scheme to counter this worrying trend and its causes?
Pure-bred poultry and the application of Directive 2009/158 /EC – E-008936/2014
7 November 2014, Daniel Caspary (PPE)
1. Is it the intention of the above Directive and of the Commission that the sale of pure-bred poultry breeds in other Member States should be banned in Germany, since the required serological tests pursuant to Article 14, paragraph 2(e), are not feasible in practice for the micro-stocks of pure-bred poultry breeders?
2. Directive 2009/158/EC provides, in Recital 7, that ‘specific trade’ should be excluded from the scope of this directive. Do pure-bred poultry markets and the act of selling at such markets by pure-bred poultry breeders constitute such ‘specific trade’?
Goose feather collection techniques that are harmful to animal welfare – E-009497/2014
— What measures has the Commission taken to enforce the abovementioned directive and to prevent the collection of feathers from live geese which are not going through their natural moulting phase?
— Does the Commission not agree that it might be appropriate to submit a legislative proposal regarding the introduction of a voluntary mark to certify that the goose feathers were obtained without causing suffering to the animals?
Plucking of live geese – E-008277/2014
In view of this situation, what does the Commission intend to do to ensure that this recommendation is adhered to and that this practice stops?
Protection for rabbits in European breeding farms – E-009611/2014
21 Nov. 2014, Giulia Moi (EFDD)
“1. What steps has the Commission taken to introduce species‐specific legislation for protecting the welfare of rabbits?
2. Have European funds been used to support rabbit farming and, if so, does the Commission intend to ensure that future funding is not spent on breeding rabbits in battery or enriched cages, but instead solely on breeding systems paying greater attention to their welfare?
3. Does the Commission intend to work with the Italian Government regarding the enormous quantities of antibiotics required to treat the 175 million rabbits bred yearly in the country, as well as on measures to reduce their use?”
Transportation and slaughter of live animals outside the EU – E-010843/2014
Does the Commission intend to take concrete and urgent measures to prohibit the transportation of live animals from Europe to third countries?
Does it intend to raise awareness in such countries with a view to the harmonisation of their legislation in this matter with European legislation?
Origin labelling for horsemeat – E-009375-14
17 Nov. 2014, Elisabetta Gardini (PPE)
In the light of the above, can the Commission answer the following questions:
1. What is the current status of the impact and feasibility assessment of the possible extension of the compulsory indication of the country of origin or area of provenance for horsemeat?
2. What action does the Commission intend to take to ensure that European consumers are correctly informed in this matter and safeguard the competitivity of the Italian horsemeat sector?
Standard welfare conditions for horses across the EU – E-010234/2014
In many Member States, tourist attractions include horse-and-carriage city tours. Given that horses are sentient beings rather than machines, is the Commission considering the introduction of standard welfare conditions for working horses across the EU in order to regulate hours of rest and work and lay down requirements as regards better conditions, food and water consumption and other factors which impact upon the proper treatment of these horses?
Killing of Excalibur – E-009748/2014
1. In view of the killing of Excalibur, what specific measures will the Commission take under the EU’s 2012-2015 Strategy for the Protection and Welfare of Animals with a view to ensuring compliance with Protocol P4 and/or achieving the goal of zero killings?
2. Will it standardise the protocols on quarantine for biosafety reasons and euthanasia?
Transport of invertebrates – problems with application of the Regulati – P-001065/2015
The French pet shop workers' union Prodaf has already drawn the attention of DG SANCO to this issue in December 2014 and January 2015. At a meeting on 9 January2015 in Brussels between UPS and Unit G.3, reference was made to the forthcoming publication of new guidelines. I can hardly stress too much the urgency of the situation for many people working in this sector.
1. Has the Commission yet identified any possible approaches to this issue?
2. Could the Commission please state when it expects to publish these new guidelines?
Puppy smuggling – P-000091/2015
In their role as guardians of the treaties, the Commission and its services such as the Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) are responsible for ensuring that EU legislation on animal health and welfare is properly implemented and enforced.
How does the Commission plan to ensure the enforcement of Regulation (EU) No 576/2013 now that it has come into force, given the issues of enforcement with Regulation (EC) No 998/2003?
Pets to be included in the European Animal Welfare Act – E-010549/2014
Is the Commission considering including pets, and in particular stray dogs and cats, in the European Animal Welfare Act?
Stray dogs in Romania during the winter – E-009782/2014
Can the Commission clarify what special measures have been taken to improve conditions for stray dogs in Romania during the winter?
Ban on farming for fur production/animal welfare – E-011036/2014
Does the Commission intend to ban this type of farming, which clearly does not obey any animal welfare standards?
Animal testing in the context of the REACH and Cosmetics regulations – P-000498/2015
Together with the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), the Commission has recently clarified the relationship between the marketing ban for products tested on animals under the Cosmetics Regulation ((EC) No 1223/2009) and the information requirements under the REACH Regulation ((EC) No 1907/2006). It has made clear that the testing and marketing bans in the Cosmetics Regulation do not apply to testing required for environmental endpoints, exposure of workers or non-cosmetic uses of substances under REACH.
I would therefore welcome a clarification from the Commission on why it considers such an exception to be necessary, and why the tests used to ensure consumer safety cannot be applied to worker safety
Animal categories in the Animal Health Regulation – E-000711/2015
1. Why is there no category of ‘non-kept animals’ in the Animal Health Regulation?
2. Why does the Commission want to categorise stray animals as wild, instead of giving them their own category of ‘non-kept animals’?
Nearly five months after banning cosmetic animal testing within the country, India has now also imposed a ban on importing such products that test on animals and thus become the first country in south Asia to do so.
The Belgian Animal Welfare organisation GAIA as well as the German Organisation Ärzte gegen Tierversuche (Doctors against animal testing) have done a 6-minutes animation video explaining why animal testing is crual and useless. No bloody or horrible picture in this video, only facts and explanation.
You can watch the video here under:
The Chinese government will easy rules requiring animal testing by allowing local companies to use data from animal tests done in other continents. This would avoid that useless animal testings are practiced. According to HSI, chemical testing for cosmetics involves more than 300,000 rabbits, mice, and other animals annually.
In New Zealand, a new reform on animal welfare rules has passed. Animal testing is now better framed, and the new law set up new rules for breeding and killing of animals used for experiments. Among others, the new requirements planned the mandatory consultancy of an ethics committee.
16 April 2013
Marc Tarabella (S&D)