As you will see on this page, the Chlorophiles did a lot of work in the few years they exist. And we are planning a lot more, as long as some environmental groups continue to attack environmentally sound chlorine uses like in PVC.
If you have a little time, then visit our Chlorophiles photobook (150 k!).
Our first action was at the Greenpeace-headquarters in Brussels, at the end of January 1994. About 40 workers of the chlorine industry and their family, with banners, flags and T-shirts protested against the Greenpeace anti-chlorine campaign. An Open Letter was given to Greenpeace with an appeal to start an open, scientific debate on chlorine use. After that it remained very quite from that side for months...
In Ostend (Belgium), during the month October 1994, Greenpeace had anounced an action, together with the fishermen, against the pollution of the North Sea with all that "chlorinestuff", during a scientific symposium on the North Sea. To counteract them, the Chlorophiles held a press conference, where they accused Greenpeace to tell untruths and half truths in their last "scientific" report "Zero Dioxin".
Apart of that report, the Chlorophiles accused Greenpeace that their ships do pollute the atmosphere with as much dioxins and much more potent cancerogenic materials than a factory where hundreds of thousands tons of chlorine and PVC are made per year. And their papers, printed on 100% "chlorine-free" paper, contains dioxins too.
At the pressconference, a petition from the workers in the chlorine industry against the allegations of Greenpeace and again for a sound scientific debate, was introduced. More than 2,500 signatures where gathered in a few weeks.
The announced action of Greenpeace was cancelled...
Also in October, a complaint was made against a Greenpeace-paper "Chlorine is everywhere" at the "Reclame Code Commissie" (the Dutch advertising code council). After the written complaints and defense, a hearing was held on 23th januari 1995. The outcome was negative: Greenpeace was hiding their really untruths and halftruths behind the "precautionary principle" and they gave a lot of alternatives for chlorine uses, especially PVC, but didn't say that those are better for the environment, so they had not to proof what they were telling! See our complaint at the Dutch Advertising Code Council.
On december 3, 1994, the Chlorophiles again visited the Greenpeace-headquarters in Brussels, now accompanied with Santa Claus (who is celebrated in The Netherlands and Belgium on December 6). Although our visit was anounced, Greenpeace was not at home, so we pushed our 2,500 petitions in their letter box...
In July 1995 we had our first action in The Netherlands. Greenpeace announced a tour against chlorine with the Sirius around the Dutch harbours during the summer months. With a few Chlorophiles we were present at their premiere at Scheveningen, near The Hague. There was one problem: to find them! Before the premiere they were at a place where lots of people was passing. Now they were hidden, so that nearly nobody could find them. Don't they like that there is opposition? Because there was so few interest and the play they were given was surprisingly moderate, we stopped further actions.
Also in July, Greenpeace stopped a train with VCM (Vinyl Chloride Monomer, the raw material to make PVC from the LVM-factory in Belgium) at Diest (B). The intention was to stop the train, until the end of the North Sea Minister Conference in Esbjerg (Denmark). According to Greenpeace, chlorinated chemicals are responsible for the possible declining of the male fertility (see chlorine and hormonal changes), which is in any case not true for VCM nor PVC. In a counteraction, about 50 workers of the VCM factory, blocked all roads in the neighbourhood, until the police lifted the Greenpeace activists. Greenpeace, angry about the abrupt end of their action, started a complaint for "dangerous transports" against the LVM-factory. They lost the case and have to pay all costs...
On March 4, 1996, Greenpeace was presenting their work "Building without PVC" at the "Batibouw" building exhibition at Brussels. Representatives from the Plastics Industry were there to react on their paper and the Chlorophiles were there too and reacted with a banner: "Greenpeace lies and they bloody well know it"...
Half July, the Chlorophiles launched their bookwork "The hidden side of Greenpeace" in different languages. It covered all aspects of the Greenpeace actions and the methods they use. At this moment there is a process going on against our book, started by Greenpeace Germany against 16 of the 167 quotations.
On September 19, 1996, there was a demonstration of PVC employers and workers unions in Düsseldorf against the lies told by Greenpeace and others about PVC in the Düsseldorf airport disaster. The Chlorophiles were there with a small delegation and their new mascotte, Greenocchio... See our Düsseldorf photobook.
On September 25, 1996, Greenpeace held a conference in the London Marriot hotel, about the Brent Spar and beyond, including chlorine and PVC topics. The Chlorophiles were there before the hotel entrance (to go inside was too expensive, Greenpeace "business" prices are not for Chlorophiles...) to demonstrate the other side of the chlorine story...
All actions of the Chlorophiles were covered by national and/or local TV-stations and press. After the first action in 1994, the opinion of the Chlorophiles on chlorine and PVC was publiced in "opinion" pages of several newspapers, with in general no answer from Greenpeace at all or some beyond the question.
In 1995 again a few "opinions" where published in Flemish and Dutch newspapers.
The launch of our bookwork, mid July 1996, "The hidden side of Greenpeace" was commented in a lot of newspapers and magazines in whole Europe and especially in The Netherlands, where Greenpeace is a very strong movement (600,000 members on 15 million inhabitants). Several interviews and opinions were published in the following months...
In September 1994, about 100 Chlorophiles participated in a sports manifestation (the "Gordel" in Brussels). For every bicycled or walked km, an amount of money was sponsored by our employers. This money was given to the Red Cross to build a meeting house in a small village in Senegal.
In the mean time, a lot of letters, with kilograms of documentation, were send to every firm which claimed they were selling "chlorine-free" or "PVC-free" packaging or products, implying this would be better for the environment. In general the response of the firms were positive: next deliveries where without these remarks.
The 6th European Sceptics conference was held in Ostend (B) in September 1994, with as theme: "Sense and Nonsense in the Environmental Debate", a nice oportunity to give our opinion...
In November 1994 a lecture on "Chlorine, PVC and the environment" was held in Ghent (B) for the plastics sector of the Flemish Engineers and students in plastics engineering. On March 7 1995 the same lecture was given in Diepenbeek (B). On April 26, 1996 it happened for the Heidelberg Appeal group of The Netherlands in Utrecht.
In the rest of 1996 was mainly used to strength the Chlorophiles movement in other European countries, the US and Canada and we were transforming our movement to an official non-profit organisation (B). The name "Chlorophiles" was officially deposited.
You are at level one of the Chlorophiles pages.
Created: February 23, 1996.
Last update: February 22, 1998.
Home Page of the Chlorophiles
The author: Ferdinand Engelbeen
Chlorine in the world, a general story
Chlorophiles actions photobook (150 k!)
Before you react on our actions against Greenpeace, please reed the pages about Greenpeace and chlorine, maybe you will understand why.
For any other comment on this or other Chlorophiles pages:Chlorophiles@ping.be