In the late 1980s, European countries initiated the first ever process to eliminate the most significant environmental threats to human health. Progress towards this goal is driven by a series of ministerial conferences held every five years and coordinated by WHO/Europe.
The conferences are unique, bringing together different sectors to shape European policies and actions on environment and health. The first conference was held in Frankfurt in 1989, followed by Helsinki in 1994 and London in 1999. The Fourth conference took place in Budapest in 2004 with the theme "The future for our children".