being treated for chemical exposure

being treated for chemical exposure

Posted by Colleen Hutchings in Tracking Kid Safe, Uncategorized on October 15, 2009 |

More than 150 representatives of industry, government, academia and the environmental community voiced a broad consensus this week that the time has come for comprehensive reform of the outdated federal law created to ensure that Americans’ health is not threatened by the thousands of chemicals they encounter in daily life. Click here to read the rest of EWG’s wrap-up.

Highlights from The Future of U.S. Chemicals Policy

Conference Multimedia Resources
Click here to watch The Future of U.S. Chemicals Policy in full.
Click to watch all of EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson’s speech.
Click here to see a slide show of this historic conference.

Read reactions from EWG staff
Key stakeholders share ideas about TSCA reform
The morning session of today’s historic conference exploring routes to federal chemical policy reform made clear that there is now a strong consensus among key stakeholders – industry, the EPA and the White House, the environmental health community – on the need to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

But as the saying goes, the devil is in the details. Thanks to today’s event, we now have the pleasure of discussing them.Click here to read the rest of the morning wrap-up.

You can help us keep reform moving forward!
Help us keep the pressure on Congress to reform TSCA. Sign our Declaration today to tell your Represenatives that you think children being born prepolluted is morally wrong. Click here to add your voice today.

We know far too little about chemicals coming into the market. Manufacturers have far too little certainty about how chemicals they make are regulated. The EPA needs the tools to do the job that the public expects.
– EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson

Dear Christian,

October 6 was a historic day. In a first-of-its-kind conference, EWG brought together more than 150 representatives of government, academia, the environmental community and industry (yes, you read that right). The subject was chemicals policy. And everyone had one thought in mind:

The time has come for comprehensive reform of our nation’s outdated system for chemicals regulation. It has failed to ensure that the health of our children — and of all Americans — is no longer threatened by the thousands of chemicals encountered in daily life. As a result, consumers no longer trust that the products they are being sold are safe.

EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson joined us because she agrees that now is the time for change. Her keynote address signaled that the Administration is ready to take on chemicals policy reform.

Click here for blog updates, photos and video from the conference, including excerpts from Administrator Jackson’s keynote address.

Strange bedfellows
Parents, children, doctors, legislators and, of course, the chemical industry itself, are all stakeholders when it comes to comprehensive chemical reform. One refrain we heard over and over during the conference, from business leaders and environmental health advocates alike, was this: the time for change is NOW. Though we may not agree on every detail, we do agree that the goal of meaningful reform will not be met unless we all come to the table and hammer out our differences.

A special thanks goes to Sen. Frank Lautenberg (NJ), Sen. Barbara Boxer (CA), EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, Rep. Henry Waxman (CA), Rep. Bobby Rush (IL), and you. Unless consumers speak up — with your voices and with your dollars — these dialogues, and the reform on the horizon, will not happen.


Ken Cook
President, Environmental Working Group


EPA Proposes Changes To Biofuel Regulationscorn

By Steven Mufson and Juliet Eilperin
Washington Post Staff Writers

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Obama administration waded deeper into climate regulation yesterday, proposing new standards for alternative motor fuels and setting off a debate among ethanol producers and environmentalists about scientific assumptions that could be worth billions of dollars to industry.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed regulations are designed to curtail greenhouse gas emissions blamed for climate change and to make sure that alternative fuels, such as ethanol or biodiesel, do not have indirect effects, such as deforestation in other countries, that could inadvertently increase levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

But the administration did not take a position on key regulatory issues, instead inviting comment from scientific experts and businesses on how to measure carbon emissions from the full lifecycle of biofuels, from land use to fertilizer to manufacturing process to delivery. EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson also said that existing corn ethanol distilleries or ones under construction would probably be “grandfathered,” or exempt from the new regulations.

Jackson’s statement blunted criticism, especially from corn-based ethanol producers that have been targeted for competing with food crops and for using substantial amounts of fertilizer in fields and fossil fuels in distilleries.

In a telephone call with reporters yesterday, Jackson said the administration wanted to make sure that its final rule on renewable fuels is “informed by the best science.”

Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association, said his group would “participate aggressively” to shape the final regulations. “There’s a great deal of uncertainty about this,” he said.

Dinneen said the EPA had failed to count the indirect costs of petroleum production, had underestimated improvements in productivity of corn growers, and had overstated the impact of corn ethanol on U.S. food production and thus exaggerated the expansion of new crop planting in forests and savannahs of places such as Brazil.

“We don’t think the theory of indirect land use change will hold up,” said Wesley Clark, co-chairman of Growth Energy, an ethanol industry group. “It’s unfairly applied only to ethanol.”

Some environmentalists were also concerned about the EPA proposals. The EPA raised the possibility of computing greenhouse gas costs over a 100-year period instead of a 30-year period. The longer time frame would make the benefits of corn-based ethanol seem greater while discounting the initial costs, such as the loss of untilled land, over time. For example, the EPA said corn-based ethanol is 16 percent better than regular gasoline if its costs are calculated over 100 years, but 5 percent worse over 30 years.

“EPA has left open the option that an exception to good science could be made in the case of a favored special interest,” said Frank O’Donnell, who heads Clean Air Watch.

But even as politicians and lobbyists sought to protect traditional biofuels, business experts said the recent corn ethanol boom and subsequent crash had soured many investors on such ventures.

“Since then, the focus has basically been on second-generation biofuels. It’s given people time to think about alternatives,” said Kevin Parker, global head of asset management for Deutsche Bank Group. “It’s become clear to us, in the work that we’ve done, that converting photosynthesis into transport fuel is very inefficient. There’s no sense of rolling back the clock on that one. The world has moved on.”