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The Latest on Chemical Policy

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

An FDA panel is examining possible health concerns associated with antibacterial soaps, wipes and other household products. The market is booming for these germ-killers, but home use might be creating strains resistant to both antibacterials and antibiotics. This is of particular concern to families with children, as it presents the double-edged sword of exposing children to surviving super-germs, or, on the other hand, overprotecting them in a squeaky-clean environment that prevents them from building immunity, which can lead to asthma or allergies later in life.

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EnviroBlog
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Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Using a line straight from the chemical industry's playbook, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a bill that would have established the nation's first state biomonitoring program last weekend.

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EnviroBlog
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Wednesday, October 5, 2005

W.R. Grace strikes again, the Dallas Morning News reports, with news that up to 450 employees of the company's West Dallas plant and their families are at risk from asbestos-related illnesses.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Monday, October 3, 2005

Ag-Mart Produce, the giant Florida tomato grower, is eliminating the use of some pesticides linked to birth defects following a lawsuit involving three seriously deformed babies born to field workers.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Thursday, September 29, 2005

The Washington State Toxics Coalition and the Toxic-Free Legacy Coalition have started body burden testing on 10 people in the Puget Sound area, looking for pesticides, heavy metals, PCBs, fire retardants, phthalates and other toxics in their subjects' bodies.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Wal-Mart's 153 California stores are in danger of an audit from the state Department of Pesticide Regulation for selling home and lawn pesticides not approved for use in the state.

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EnviroBlog
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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

More and more groups are examining the Senate asbestos bill called FAIR and finding it doesn’t keep its promises – to anyone. Environmental Working Group’s research has shown that the Senate’s answer to the asbestos epidemic is inadequate for the millions who will suffer from exposure to this toxic mineral.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Friday, September 16, 2005

Toxic PCBs have been found at 140 times the level that requires cleanup at a South Seattle site that EPA declared clean more than five years ago. Fish in the nearby Duwamish River are the most PCB-laden in the state, and high levels have been found in salmon and killer whales in the Puget Sound.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Tuesday, August 23, 2005

A report the GAO released last week faults EPA for not enforcing laws that prevent companies from ducking environmental cleanup costs by filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Six West Viriginia and Ohio lawyers received the 2005 Trial Lawyer of the Year Award from the Trial Lawyers for Public Justice Foundation July 26 for their work on behalf of residents drinking Teflon-contaminated water from DuPont's nearby Washington Works plant. DuPont was sued for dumping the persistent Teflon chemical into community water supplies, although the company has known of its toxicity and potential to cause human health effects for decades.

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EnviroBlog
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Wednesday, August 10, 2005

In the past week, activists have pressed Teflon maker DuPont to clean up its act on two fronts. Environmental groups demanded that the company monitor groundwater around its local plant, the only one in the US that makes this indestructible, cancer-causing chemical, and the steeworkers' union urged carpet and clothing retailers and fast food companies to warn consumers that their products may be coated with chemicals that break down into DuPont's toxic Teflon chemical.

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EnviroBlog
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Thursday, June 30, 2005

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that California Assembly's Health Committee advanced a bill that would require manufacturers of personal care products to inform the state's Department of Health Services whenever they are making products with chemicals linked to cancer or birth defects.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Supported by local health and environmental activists, the Air Pollution Control Board in Louisville, Ky., made admirable history last week with the Strategic Toxic Air Reduction (STAR) program. Three years ago, according to the Courier-Journal, the EPA rated the city’s air the worst in the entire Southeast, but as of July 1, Louisville will have some of the nation’s strongest, healthiest air quality standards. The plan will reduce 37 specific chemicals emitted by industrial activity; programs to reduce emissions from cars and other sources will be implemented soon.

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EnviroBlog
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Friday, June 3, 2005

A major investigation by The Riverside Press-Enterprise finds that an industry-funded study, relied on by federal scientists to recommend drinking water standards for a toxic rocket fuel chemical, erroneously reported no effects on people from low doses of the chemical.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Monday, May 23, 2005

Businesses that object to tough pollution standards often hold communities or states hostage by threatening to take their jobs and move. Now the shoe is on the other foot in West Virginia, where a frozen-foods company refused to bring its plant to the town of Parkersburg, where the water is contaminated with the Teflon chemical C8.

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EnviroBlog
Blog Post
Friday, May 20, 2005

In the latest study of toxic chemicals in people, the BBC reports that seven British TV personalities were tested for 104 industrial compounds in their blood. All were contaminated with toxins, and one had 30 different chemicals in her sysem. Scientists tested for commonly found chemicals including banned pesticides like DDT, flame retardants and the PFOA chemical found in Teflon and other nonstick pans and stain repellents.

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EnviroBlog
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Saturday, May 7, 2005

The penalty DuPont will reportedly pay for covering up its pollution of newborn American babies with the cancer-causing Teflon chemical will likely be $15 million. This sum amounts to just 8 percent of the maximum allowable fine.

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News Release
Thursday, April 28, 2005

One California city is taking no chances on a toxic rocket fuel in its drinking water. Although neither the EPA nor the state has made a final decision on safe levels of perchlorate, the Associated Press reports that Rialto, a working-class Los Angeles suburb, is taking a zero-tolerance stance and shutting down all wells that have tested positive for the chemical.

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EnviroBlog
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Thursday, April 28, 2005

The California Air Resources Board today adopted the nation's most stringent smog standards, which state scientists say could avert hundreds of premature deaths, thousands of hospital trips and more than 3 million school absences of asthmatic children.

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News Release
Thursday, April 21, 2005

The ARB meets Thursday, April 28 in El Monte to consider recommendations from state scientists for adopting tougher ozone standards.

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