EWG News and Analysis

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EWG News Roundup (7/23): House Passes PFAS Reforms in Military Spending Bill, Bodies of Water Infested With E. Coli and More

Thursday, July 23, 2020

This week, the House passed the annual Department of Defense spending bill, which included more than a dozen reforms to reduce and remediate pollution from the toxic fluorinated chemicals known as PFAS.

“Thanks to bipartisan efforts, Congress remains as determined as ever to help combat the ballooning PFAS contamination crisis that is impacting military bases and nearby communities throughout the country,” said Scott Faber, EWG senior vice president for government affairs. “EWG applauds Armed Services Committee Chairman Smith and a large bipartisan group of House members for keeping the pressure on the Pentagon to address the toxic PFAS contamination crisis.”

Last week, The Packer, a conventional produce industry trade publication, polled consumers on the influence of EWG’s annual Dirty Dozen™ list. The publication released some of the results of the poll, making it clear shoppers are just as concerned as EWG is about pesticides in their fruits and veggies.

And finally, bodies of water across the country are contaminated not just by toxic algae blooms but in some cases also by E. coli or other fecal coliform bacteria. EWG broke down how this phenomenon happens and why it’s so harmful.

Here’s some news you can use going into the weekend.

Children’s Health

Business Insider: I use this gentle baby balm to ease my toddler's skin irritation when her eczema flares up

On top of that, all of their products carry the Environmental Working Group's EWG Verified guarantee that they do not contain potentially harmful ingredients.

Baby Gaga: Is Baby Fluoridated Water Safe?

Too much fluoride can lead to "dental fluorosis, which causes white lines, spots, staining or pitting to form on teeth and may weaken teeth as they emerge from the gums," as stated by EWG Children's Health.

Dr. Greene: Is Organic Food Really Different?

This is true even in babies at the moment of birth. I participated in a study with the Environmental Working Group where we analyzed umbilical cord blood and found pesticides in every baby tested.

The Picky Eater Blog: The Best Natural Products for Babies (2020 Guide)

Here’s what I looked for when determining this list of the best natural products for babies: EWG Verified, Made Safe Certified, or USDA Organic

University of Michigan Health System News: 5 Misconceptions About Kids and Sunscreen

For parents who want more details on specific sunscreens, DeHaan recommends looking them up online through the nonprofit Environmental Working Group.

Launch of EWG VERIFIED™ Prima Products

Pharma Intelligence: Environmental Working Group Awards Its ‘Verified’ Seal To First CBD Brand, Prima

The “EWG VERIFIED” mark, and Prima’s recently earned B Corp certification, should help to bolster the company’s purpose-driven, “beyond clean” claims in consumers’ esteem.

Glyphosate in Hummus Report

Today: New study finds weed killer in popular hummus brands – here's what you need to know

The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit environmental organization that receives funding from organic food companies like Stonyfield Farm and Organic Valley, conducted the study and found glyphosate (which is used in herbicides like Roundup) in many non-organic products it tested.

Detroit Free Press: Small amounts of weed killer in popular hummus brands, study shows

In a report released July 14, the nonprofit Environmental Working Group (EWG) identified glyphosate at detectable levels in 80% of non-organic or conventional hummus. 

Goop: Is There Glyphosate in Your Hummus? And Other Stories to Read Now

The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit analysis group, launched a report this week stating that it had discovered glyphosate in 80 p.c of nonorganic hummus and chickpeas it sampled from main meals retailers.

Jewish Telegraphic Agency: Check your hummus: Environmental group finds high levels of possible carcinogen

Laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group found glyphosate, the chemical better known as Roundup, in 80% of conventional chickpeas and hummus tested.

Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association: High Levels of Bayer’s Weedkiller Found in Hummus, Chickpeas

Independent laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group found glyphosate, the notorious weedkiller linked to cancer, in more than 80 percent of non-organic hummus and chickpeas samples, and detected at far lower levels in several organic versions.

Washington Latest: Weedkiller chemical found in popular brands of hummus

The study, from the Environmental Working Group (EWG), found the chemical glyphosate in more than 80 percent of the non-organic hummus and chickpeas samples it studied. 

NBC News 7: New study finds weedkiller in popular hummus brands

The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit environmental organization that receives funding from organic food companies like Stonyfield Farm and Organic Valley, conducted the study and found glyphosate (which is used in herbicides like Roundup) in many non-organic products it tested. 

Lite 98.7 (Utica, N.Y.): Several Hummus Brands May Contain Herbicide

According to the Environmental Working Group, tests were conducted on 37 conventional, or non-organic, chickpea and chickpea-based hummus samples. Nearly 90% of those samples contained glyphosate.

Study for Removal of PFAS

Great Lakes Now: PFAS News Roundup: Research suggests link with COVID-19, disposal methods increase contamination

According to a study published in Chemosphere, scientists at the Environmental Working Group (EWG), Washington, D.C., have concluded that burning, discarding and flushing waste containing the toxic fluorinated chemicals known as PFAS all contribute to environmental contamination.

COVID-19 and Meatpacking Plants

Food Industry Executive: Contact Tracing, Social Distancing Monitoring, and Other Technologies for Keeping Workers Safe

According to a study from the Environmental Working Group, at least 60 food processing facilities outside the meatpacking industry reported outbreaks through early June, with more than 1,000 workers diagnosed with the virus.

Iowa Capital Dispatch: State medical director: CDC help ‘wasn’t needed’ with packing-plant outbreaks

By mid-May, the Environmental Working Group had analyzed CDC data on infections and found that plants in Iowa were hit harder than those in any other state.

COVID-19 and Farm Bailouts

Pro Farmer: Policy Focus 7/15

A little more than a dozen states have safety recommendations, but they aren’t enforceable, while the rest of the country hasn’t issued any protocols, according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), which released its findings on Tuesday (link).

Cleaning Products

Business Insider: Blueland is a new household cleaning startup that helps you reduce single-use plastic consumption — here’s how the products perform

The key highlights are that all the products are free from volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are harmful to pregnant or nursing women and children, and anything on the Environmental Working Group's restricted list.

Reader's Digest: 13 Silent Signs Your Home Is an Unhealthy Place to Live

The Environmental Working Group’s investigation of more than 2,000 cleaning supplies on the American market revealed that many substances in them are linked to serious health problems like asthma, allergies, and even cancer.

EcoCult: Your Guide to Finding the Effective and Non-Toxic Laundry Detergents

The Environmental Working Group, creators of the wildly popular “Skin Deep” cosmetics database, have also assessed hundreds of detergents to determine the safest ones.

Conservation Database

Prarie Public: The Big Business of Hunting

As of 2015, there were almost 15,000 participants in the program, receiving seventy million dollars.

Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database

10 Magazine: Introducing HwaHae (화해): The Best Thing to Happen to K-Beauty Lovers (And Your Skin)

It lists the ingredients together with their EWG (Environmental Working Group) ratings, equipping you with the knowledge of what you’re actually putting on your face.

Buzzfeed: 24 Products That May Only Do One Thing, But They Do It Really, Really Well

It's vegan, cruelty-free, and uses ingredients based on their Environmental Working Group (EWG) safety.

Byrdie: Āether Beauty Launches a Clean "Golden Supernova" Highlighter Formulated for Deep Skin Tones

A report on the Environmental Working Group shared the alarming statistic that one in 12 beauty and personal care products marketed to Black women are ranked highly hazardous.

CNET: Clean beauty products: What it means and why brands ban certain ingredients

The Environmental Working Group is a key civic group known for providing groundbreaking research on how toxic ingredients and other practices can harm people and the environment.

Women’s Wear Daily: How Black-Owned Beauty Retailers Are Shaking Up the Beauty Industry

BLK + GRN’s four-person team run the ingredients of each product available on the company’s web site through the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database. 

EWG VERIFIED™

Bustle: The 16 Best Organic Skin Care Products

Olivarrier Cream all barrier reef: Certified vegan, EWG verified, COSMOS organic certified, Cert Clean Canada, PETA certified cruelty-free

Beauty Independent: Is Greenwashing One Of Beauty’s Biggest Trends? Brand Founders Reveal How They See It Happening

We stand behind our responsibility as a company to create clean and thoughtfully formulated products for our customers, and that is why our products are EWG verified clean.

Green America: More Green Businesses Getting Creative During COVID-19

Be Green Bath and Body is an EWG certified skincare business that has seen success during the pandemic, too. 

Jewish Life News: Coffee Beauty Products Market Changing Strategies to provide Competitive edge

In December 2018, Herbal Essence, a brand of Procter & Gamble, received Environmental Working Group (EWG) verified standard for its two new natural shampoo products.

Glyphosate in Oats

The Western Producer: Oat acres in limbo

The Environmental Working Group published reports suggesting that residues of glyphosate are present in granola, instant oats and snack bars that are popular with kids.

Minnesota CAFO Report

Fluence Corporation: Feedlot Wastewater Could Threaten Minnesota Drinking Water

A new Environmental Working Group (EWG) investigative report has found a combination of manure and chemical fertilizer may be overloading cropland runoff with nitrogen, phosphorus, or both in the vast majority of Minnesota farming counties.

Owatonna People’s Press: Environmental group report highlights ag runoff issues

Excessive runoff from more than 23,000 animal feedlots across Minnesota has caused significant damage to the state’s water quality, according to a new report from the nonprofit Environmental Working Group.

PFAS Military Map

JD Supra: Wrap-Up of Federal and State Chemical Regulatory Developments, July 2020

Bipartisan, Bicameral PFAS-Free Military Purchasing Act Introduced: […] The Environmental Working Group and the Green Science Policy Institute have endorsed the legislation.

Journal Courier: House approves annual defense bill after veto threat

PFAS, which are known to cause negative health effects, have been confirmed on 15 military bases in New York, including Fort Drum, and is suspected at eight others, according to the nonprofit Environmental Working Group.

National Association of Counties: Counties Are Affected by Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF)

In an extensive study conducted by the EWG for example, water wells around dozens of airports tested a concentration of PFAS in excess of the EPA safety guidelines of 70 parts per trillion (“ppt”), with some reaching values as high as 13,700 ppt.

PFAS Tap Water Contamination

Colorado Springs Gazette: Colorado commission adopts new policies on regulation of firefighting foam chemical 

“This is a multi-administration failure to take action on PFOA and PFOS and on the broader class of PFAS chemicals that may pose health effects,” says Melanie Benesh, legislative attorney for the Environmental Working Group, which has called for limiting the two chemicals in drinking water since the early 2000s.

Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™

Mashable: 20+ apps and websites to help you live a more sustainable life

Another scanner app from the Environmental Working Group is the free Healthy Living app, which lets you scan or search food or cosmetic products to see how clean the company is, from the ingredients it uses in its products to how they're produced.

Bru Direct: 5 Health Benefits Of Fiber-Rich Celery

Celery is on the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Dirty Dozen list of the most pesticide-contaminated produce, so make sure you only buy organic celery.

Deccan Chronicle: Most veggies, fruits have toxic pesticide residue

However, according to a March-2020 report by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), an America activist group, close to 70% of the fresh foodstuff sold in the United States contains residues of toxic pesticides.

Eat This, Not That!: 5 Best Store-Bought Broth & Stock Brands For Weight Loss

According to the Environmental Working Group, "A review reports that artificial and natural flavorings are unspecified mixtures of as many as 100 flavoring substances and solvents, emulsifiers, and preservatives."

EWG Guide to Sunscreens

Popular Science: Your summer guide to sunscreen, from SPF to not-so-magic pills

There's also a report from the Environmental Working Group that gives an overall rating to how UVA-protective certain brands are.

Wall Street Journal: Sunscreen Chemicals Accumulate in Body at High Levels

In the meantime, consumers who wish to find out more about their sunscreens can consult the website of the Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit research organization that rates products.

Who What Wear: I Realized I Knew Nothing About Sunscreen, so I Got Dermatologists to School Me

Raw Elements' sunscreen is top-rated by the Environmental Working Group.

Tap Water Database

Finger Lakes: Chlorine byproduct that contaminates local tap water linked to thousands of bladder cancers in Europe

More than a dozen other Finger Lakes water systems — including those serving Canandaigua, Geneva, Ithaca, Penn Yan and Watkins Glen — have reported quarterly TTHMs of more than 100 ppb at least once since 2012, according to data from the Environmental Working Group, a non-profit watchdog based in Washington, D.C.

 

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