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 more than 80,000 chemicals currently being used in consumer products 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.
Six dedicated public servants will be honored tonight in San Francisco for their shared commitment to protecting the health and environment of Californians.Read More
EWG comments on FDA’s 5-year plan urge the agency to give priority to cosmetics safety, particularly nanotechnology in cosmetics, surveillance of adverse reactions and consumer education of questionable cosmetics claims.Read More
EWG writes FDA commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg that a pivotal new study intensifies concerns about the danger of bisphenol A, plastics chemical and synthetic estrogen, to public health.Read More
EWG applauds EPA’s proposal to strengthen regulations on chemical production and use data under the Toxic Substances Control Act.Read More
More than 50 organizations concerned about the risks of pesticides to human health and the environment have joined forces to fight California officials' award of a $180,000 taxpayer-funded grant to a chemical agribusiness public relations campaign.Read More
EWG opposes an EPA pesticide office plan for conditional registration of a nanoscale silver chemical known as HeiQ AGS-20 and used as an antimicrobial, pesticide and textile preservative. EWG asks the agency not to approve this chemical’s use in consumer products until its maker produces all the data EPA typically requires for regulation of antimicrobials and until an EPA evaluation of these data determines that the product is safe for people and the environment.Read More
EWG comments to EPA’s National Center for Environmental Assessment question a case study’s failure to clearly present conclusions about the possible effects on people and the environment of nanoscale silver. EWG calls on the agency to conduct thorough health and safety evaluations of novel nanoscale materials prior to market entry.Read More
Oakland, Ca – In a victory for the chemical industry and a great loss for the health of California’s children, the California State Legislature on Tuesday narrowly failed to pass a bill that would have eliminated the plastics chemical, bisphenol A (BPA), a synthetic estrogen, from baby bottles, sippy cups and infant formula cans sold in California.Read More
Washington, D.C. –Environmental Working Group (EWG) President Ken Cook testified today that reform legislation now before Congress “is essential to fixing our broken toxic chemicals policy.”Read More
EWG President Ken Cook testifies to the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection about the major shortcomings in the Toxic Substances Control Act.Read More
EWG found BPA on two-fifths of the 36 thermal paper receipts tested. Samples were gathered from major retail outlets including McDonald's, CVS, KFC, Whole Foods, Walmart, Safeway and the U.S. Postal Service.Read More
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressional leaders today introduced in the House the first comprehensive overhaul in more than 30 years of a federal law that has been widely condemned for failing to protect Americans against the risks of toxic chemicals.Read More
Ever wonder if you can really, truly make a difference in an effort for national policy reform? I mean, it's a big country, right? Do policy makers really care that you fervently believe that chemicals should be kid-safe, not hazardous to their health? YES. YES. YES.Read More
EWG research found that the amount of dioxin a nursing infant ingests daily is up to 77 times higher than the level EPA has proposed to protect the endocrine and immune systems. The fact that both breast milk and formula are contaminated with dioxin highlights the urgent need for EPA to finish its assessment.Read More
Oakland, Calif. – The chemical industry’s agreement with the federal Food and Drug Administration to phase out toxic perfluorinated compounds used to grease-proof pizza boxes, microwave popcorn bags, fast food wrapping and other food packaging does not go far enough to protect public health.Read More
CNN's chief medical correspondent for its Health, Medical & Wellness unit, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, has put together an impressive 2-part investigative report on toxic chemicals in America. It airs this week, on June 2 & 3 @ 8 PM (EDT). He frames the series with a critical, timely question: Is enough being done to protect us from chemicals that could harm us?Read More
North Carolinians could be exposed to much higher concentrations of a notorious Teflon chemical than the rest of the country under a proposed state regulation that would allow unsafe levels of the contaminant in drinking water, scientists at EWG warn.Read More
EWG comments that FDA’s assessment of triclosan in over-the-counter antimicrobial products should weigh evidence suggesting that antibacterial hand soaps and dish detergents are no more effective than plain soap yet present significant safety concerns for people and the environment.Read More
Well-known author and psychologist Daniel Goleman suggests that if we consumers have more easily-accessible information about the products we buy, we'll be better prepared to make choices that consider ecological, social and health impacts. Perfect examples: EWG's Skin Deep database and our Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce.Read More