EU paint solvent cuts win seal of approval

Ministers back decopaints directive, issue policy statements on structural indicators, environment and health

European environment ministers have agreed to set maximum limits on organic solvents in paints and varnishes from 2007 under a new EU directive. A second round of tighter curbs will enter force for some products from 2010.

The ministerial deal, reached at a council meeting in Luxembourg on Monday, is close to the European parliament's first reading position adopted last month (EED 26/09/03). This suggests a second reading will be uncomplicated and a conciliation unlikely.

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