30 Sep 2009:
EPA Will Draft New Law
To Regulate Toxic Chemicals in Products
Lisa Jackson, administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is proposing a major change in the way the federal government regulates tens of thousands of chemicals in consumer products
, one that would place more of a responsibility on industry to prove that the compounds are safe. Jackson is proposing an overhaul of a 1976 toxics law that she called “inordinately cumbersome and time-consuming” and said that her agency will immediately begin analyzing and regulating six widely-used chemicals found in countless consumer products. Among the six are bisphenol A, used in plastic bottles; phthalates, found in vinyl and cosmetics; and perfluorinated compounds used in making non-stick coatings and food packaging. Many scientists say these chemicals can mimic hormones and hurt development of fetuses and children, as well as possibly causing reproductive problems and cancer. “As more and more chemicals are found in our bodies and the environment, the public is understandably anxious and confused,” said Jackson. “Many are turning to government for assurance that chemicals have been assessed using the best available science.”
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A look at how acidifying oceans could threaten the Dungeness crab, one of the most valuable fisheries on the U.S. West Coast. Watch the video.
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An aerial view of why Europe’s per capita carbon emissions are less than 50 percent of those in the U.S. View the photos.
An indigenous tribe’s deadly fight to save its ancestral land in the Amazon rainforest from logging. Learn more.
video series looks at the staggering amount of food wasted in the U.S. – a problem with major human and environmental costs. Watch the video.
Residents of the Chocó Rainforest in Ecuador are choosing to plant cacao over logging in an effort to slow deforestation.
Watch the video.
Tribal people and ranchers join together to stop a project that would haul coal across their Montana land. Watch the video.