How safe are the chemicals in your shampoo, toothpaste?
By Consumers Union on Thursday, April 19th, 2012
Each day you and your family interact with dozens of chemicals – in your shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste and household cleaners. But did you know that our laws don’t require most of these chemicals to be tested safe?
Some 70,000 chemicals are used in consumer products, but only 200 have been safety tested by the Environmental Protection Agency because the hurdles for testing are so high under the law.
But with the rise in childhood cancers, early puberty, infertility and learning disabilities, and scientific studies that show the chemicals we’re exposed to each day can significantly increase these risks, it’s time to improve chemical safety testing in household products.
A bill in Congress would require chemical companies show the industrial chemicals we commonly use are safe, and give the EPA the ability to ban chemicals from the marketplace that don’t meet certain safety standards.
Unfortunately, the powerful chemical industry is spending millions to keep this bill from passing. But you can help change that.
We’re joining with other public health and consumer groups to get 100,000 signatures by May in support of the Safe Chemicals Act. Please take a moment to add your name in support here.
The Safe Chemicals Act would:
• Require chemical companies to show the safety of industrial chemicals;
• Ensure the EPA has information on the health risks of chemicals
• Evaluate chemicals that could pose unacceptable risks and restrict chemicals from the marketplace that do not meet safety standards;
• Provide broad worker, market, and public access to chemical information through a public database; and
• Promote safe chemical innovation and green chemistry by incentivizing the market to develop safer alternatives to chemicals of concern.
–Shannon Baker-Branstetter, Policy Council on Energy & Environment