Future Policy Award:
Protection from Hazardous Chemicals

Hazardous chemicals: The List of Nominations is out now!

55 policies from 36 countries were nominated for the Future Policy Award on Hazardous chemicals. Please see our press release for further information.

Protecting present and future generation from hazardous chemicals!

Around 40.000 to 60.000 chemicals are part of our daily life. Many of them cause irreversible harm to our environment and our health, children and women are particularly affected. Many of these hazardous chemicals end up in our environment in the food chain and in drinking water, and accumulate in our body – for instance from highly hazardous pesticides or lead in paint. But also chemicals in plastic products or environmentally persistent pharmaceutical pollutants  are among the threats and challenges related to toxic chemicals. According to the UN, the current chemical production capacity of 2.3 billion tonnes is projected to double by 2030.

In recent years, the demand for protection of human rights, especially children’s rights from toxins is emerging. The majority of children globally are born “pre-polluted” in utero, with numerous contaminants that impact on several of their rights. As a result, a “silent pandemic” of disability and disease is spreading in association with exposure to toxins and pollution during childhood.

Most effective policy solutions to protect people and planet from hazardous chemicals

We face a dramatic number of deaths and illnesses from hazardous chemicals as well as air, water and soil pollution and contamination. This is impacting present and future generations. It is therefore absolutely critical that we strengthen the sound management of chemicals and waste – through inclusive, effective, inspiring and innovative laws and policies. This is why in 2020, we are looking for the most effective policy solutions that protect our environment and our health from hazardous chemicals.

The World Future Council’s Future Policy Award highlights exemplary laws and policies that protect people and the environment from hazardous chemicals. We in particular want to highlight laws, policies and legal frameworks that minimise the adverse effects of exposure to chemicals on human health, with a focus on children’s health, and the environment. Consumption and production of chemicals are rapidly increasing in emerging economies, and we are therefore specifically interested in policies from developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

The “Oscar” on best Policies

The Future Policy Award showcases legislation and policies that create better living conditions for current and future generations. The aim of the award is to raise global awareness for these exemplary laws and policies, and speed up policy action towards a healthy planet and just, sustainable and peaceful societies. The Future Policy Award is the first award for laws and policies and is celebrated on an international level. Each year, the World Future Council (WFC) focuses on one topic on which policy progress is particularly urgent. We receive nominations from all over the world for laws, policies or legal frameworks that are inspiring, innovative and effective.

Hazardous chemicals pesticides sprayer
Hazardous chemicals pollution children

What happens next?

The nomination phase ended on 30 September 2020. We are now in the selection process, during which our research team applies the WFC Future Justice Policy Principles and other indices to the nominations. We will later provide a shortlist of laws, policies and legal frameworks for consideration by an international independent jury of experts.

Finally, we will celebrate the winners of the Future Policy Award! The ceremony will take place at a high-level award ceremony at the fifth session of the International Conference on Chemicals Management (ICCM5) from 5-9 July 2021 held in Bonn (Germany) The ceremony is convened by the World Future Council in partnership with the United Nation Environment Programme (UNEP), the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM), the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR),  United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and with the support of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Nuclear Safety (BMU), the German Environment Agency (UBA), the Michael Otto Foundation and the Jua Foundation.

This project is financially supported by: Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU)

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The publisher is responsible for the content of this publication.


Ingrid Fritsche

Project Manager – Future Policy Award

Samia Kassid

Senior Programme Manager – Rights of Children and Youth

Anna-Lara Stehn

Media and Communications Manager


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