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Environmental connections to public health >>

The Latest from EnviroBlog

Monday, August 19, 2013

Everybody – environmentalists and chemical industry executives alike – wants to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act. “Outdated” doesn’t begin to describe a law that was cumbersome and weak on the day President Ford signed it – Oct. 11, 1976, to be exact – the day the Chinese government arrested the Gang of Four and the top-selling single was Disco Duck Part I.  

 

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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Scientists from Pew Charitable Trusts  found that 54 percent of the chemicals added to food have never undergone the most basic safety tests recommended by the federal Food and Drug Administration. Pew’s analysis revealed that the type of testing recommended by the FDA has not been done on 88 percent of chemicals of “elevated concern” for reproductive and developmental toxicity.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

These days, legislation rarely makes it through Congress without support from interest groups on both sides of the issue, forcing lawmakers to draft bills that are largely balanced. Now, however, the American people are being pushed by big polluters to accept “chemical safety” legislation advanced by one of Washington’s most ardent anti-environmental advocates, Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), that has virtually zero support in the environmental and public health communities.

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

What you can’t see can be deadly: virtually invisible, yet absolutely lethal asbestos fibers lead to environmental and occupational diseases that claim the lives of 30 Americans every day.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Savvy consumers know that cosmetics do not have to be tested and proved safe before making it onto store shelves. Consumer protections for personal care products are outdated and broken, so shoppers must do their own legwork to ensure that the products they buy are safe – by reading labels and using resources such as EWG’s Skin Deep database.

Friday, July 26, 2013

The “fracking” boom that in recent years has flooded the United States with enormous new supplies of natural gas is now washing up on the shores of the United Kingdom, and with it concerns for the safety of that nation’s drinking water.

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Environmental Working Group is asking the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to finish the job of issuing comprehensive and enforceable regulations to ensure that sunscreens on the U.S. market are truly safe and effective.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

EWG’s science review concluded that although DEET certainly isn’t perfect, its safety profile is actually better than a lot of people think. Given that DEET is highly effective, reasonably safe and has been used billions of times, we concluded that it’s a reasonable choice when you need a repellent that really works.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

A new study has added powerful new support to the growing evidence that deep underground injections of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing or other drilling activity has made some areas of the U.S. vulnerable to tremors triggered by large earthquakes thousands of miles away.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Delicious dishes don’t have to be complicated – just a few ingredients and a few minutes is often all you need. One of my go-to resources for healthy and simple recipe inspiration is Catherine McCord’s family-friendly recipe website, Weelicious.

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Amid widespread fears that the boom in “fracking” for natural gas poses a growing array of environmental threats, some members of Congress are making a new effort to reverse a 2005 law that exempted the industry from regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Chemical Safety Improvement Act introduced in May lacks key reforms considered critical during earlier Congressional efforts to protect people from dangerous industrial chemicals.  The gold standard is the Kid Safe Chemicals Act, introduced in 2005 by the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J.  This bill is the pivotal legislation that launched the chemical reform movement in the 21st Century.

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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

study published last week by a Duke University research team has found new evidence that links hydraulic fracturing for natural gas to elevated methane levels in private water supplies across northeastern Pennsylvania.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Alliance for Food and Farming, which is run out of a P.O. box in Watsonville, Calif., claims to extol the health benefits of consuming both conventional and organic produce and maintains that its members include both conventional and organic farmers.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Having lived and worked in California most of my life (and spent the last 12 years at EWG), I could not be more proud of my state’s long-time leadership in protecting public health and the environment. 

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Monday, June 24, 2013

Industrial chemicals are everywhere in daily life — in personal care productsfurniturehousehold cleaners, toys, and even peanut butter. Because some chemicals once thought harmless have been linked to cancer, neurological problems, asthma, heart disease and other disorders, Americans deserve a strong federal law that ensures that the chemicals they encounter are as safe as possible.   

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Asbestos killed my grandfather, Roger Thomas Lunder. I was a graduate student and studying for a final on the night of December 6, 2000, when my father called to tell me that granddad had died.

At that moment I was reviewing a chapter on occupational lung diseases.  The textbook language -- "For decades asbestos has been known to cause cancer, including lung cancer and mesothelioma, and serious respiratory diseases…" –  seemed cold and clinical when I reflected on the slow, terrifying lung deterioration my grandfather had experienced over the past 14 years.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Why would 34 lawyers and law professors, 24 national non-profit organizations and 13 California-based groups all write Congress to oppose something called the Chemical Safety Improvement Act?

“Chemical safety improvement” sounds like a good thing, right? But when you look under the hood, it turns out to be a clunker.

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Thursday, June 13, 2013

The industry-backed Chemical Safety Improvement Act of 2013 could be worse for the public than the law now on the books — the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976.

The Toxic Substances Control Act is the last and weakest of the environmental laws enacted in the early 1970s. A fractious Congress under intense pressure from chemical interests patched it together and sent it to a demoralized White House in the waning days of the lame-duck Ford administration. It has never been amended, and it has resulted in very little protection of public health.

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Monday, June 10, 2013

Let’s call it like it is.  The Chemical Safety Improvement Act, introduced in the Senate two weeks ago, is no “bipartisan breakthrough,” as some have heralded it. 

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