Chemical Policy (TSCA)
There is widespread agreement that the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the principle federal statute governing the use and safety of the thousands of chemicals we are exposed to in our everyday lives, is broken and needs to be reformed.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been given responsibility but little authority to enforce TSCA. Enacted in 1976, this current law was broken from the start, grandfathering thousands of chemicals already on the market. This law is so broken and so weak that the EPA could not even ban asbestos, a cancer-causing substance that is still in use and killing thousands of Americans each year.
To date, the EPA has only reviewed a few hundred chemicals for safety. There are nearly 85,000 chemicals currently approved for use that the federal government and consumers know little to nothing about.
We need real toxic chemical reform that ensures protection of public health, especially to our vulnerable populations, and the environment from the hazards these chemicals pose.
If a product you were thinking of buying contained asbestos, chances are you’d want to know while you were in the store, say, by reading a warning on the item’s label.
Do you know that your couch may be toxic to you and your kids? A weak federal chemical safety law and poorly designed state fire safety standards fail to protect Americans from thousands of dangerous chemicals like flame retardants.
It was abundantly clear at the recent Senate hearing that Democrats on the Environment and Public Works Committee have grave doubts about legislation the chemical industry has written to regulate itself (S.697).
Testimony of Kenneth Cook on S. 697 before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public WorksRead More
Testimony of Kenneth Cook
Environmental Working GroupRead More
Many Americans probably believe asbestos was banned years ago, consigned to the trash bin of history, never to be seen again. Not so. This notorious human carcinogen is still legal for use in the U.S.
A growing chorus is speaking out against legislation to update federal chemical safety law that was introduced last week by Sens. Tom Udall, D-N.M., and David Vitter, R-La. The industry-backed bill would retain the existing weak safety standard for toxic chemicals and limit the ability of states to enact and enforce their own rules to protect public health.
WASHINGTON – A group of top legal scholars, law professors and public interest lawyers with years of collective experience in public health law, including state and federal toxics policy, today took issue with the industry-backed legislation filed last week by Sens. Tom Udall, D-N.M, and David Vitter, R-La., to update the federal chemicals safety law.
States are leading the way when it comes to protecting people from dangerous chemicals.Read More
Legislation introduced today by Sens. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Edward Markey, D-Mass., to fix the nation’s badly broken and outdated chemical safety law would be a major step in ensuring that Americans, especially children, are protected from toxic substances, Environmental Working Group said.
The two chemical safety “reform” bills introduced this week provide a clear choice for members of Congress.
Americans expect the chemicals used in everyday products to be safe. But a chemical industry-supported bill introduced today by Sens. Tom Udall, D-N.M., and David Vitter, R-La., falls far short of what’s needed to protect us from toxic and poorly regulated chemicals.
Consumers rightly expect that the chemicals used in everyday products are safe.
States are leading the way when it comes to protecting people from dangerous chemicals. And it’s a good thing, because the federal Toxic Substances Control Act, on the books since President Ford signed it into law, is broken.Read More
Chemicals used in everyday products should be safe – right? States should have a role in regulating potentially toxic chemicals – right?Read More
Updated data from the Center for Responsive Politics and lobbying disclosure forms filed with Congress show that the American Chemistry Council, along with chemical giants Dow, Dupont, BASF, 3M, Honeywell and Koch Industries, spent $69 million in 2014 to lobby legislators – up from $62.9 million in 2013 and $58.5 million in 2012.
When I heard earlier this week that a train carrying crude oil had derailed and exploded in flames near the West Virginia town of Mount Carbon, I had a sickening feeling of déjà vu.
In between blizzards, you may be thinking of installing insulation to save money and energy.
The Elk River chemical disaster, which unfolded a year and four days ago, is one of those crises too terrible to waste. Here are five surprising lessons we need to learn from the spill, which contaminated the drinking water of 300,000 West Virginians.Read More