US Senators appeal EPA finalize action toxic flame retardants

US Senators appeal EPA to finalize action on toxic flame retardants

4:14 AM, 10th July 2012
US Senators appeal EPA to finalize action on toxic flame retardants
US Senator Frank R Lautenberg.

WASHINGTON DC, US: US Senator Frank R Lautenberg and 25 of his Senate colleagues sent a letter calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to finalize its proposed actions regarding a class of toxic flame retardant chemicals. The letter also acknowledges that the EPA has limited authority to fully protect the public from these toxic chemicals under the current toxic substances control act (TSCA) and calls for reforming the law to adequately protect American families from dangerous chemicals.

Lautenberg, who chairs the Senate subcommittee on superfund, toxics and environmental health, introduced the ‘Safe Chemicals Act of 2011’ last year to modernize TSCA. The bill gives the EPA the tools it needs to require health and safety testing of toxic chemicals and places the burden on industry to prove that chemicals are safe. 

Under current law, the EPA can only call for safety testing after evidence surfaces demonstrating a chemical is dangerous. As a result, EPA has been able to require testing for just 200 of the more than 80,000 chemicals currently registered in the United States, and has been able to regulate only five dangerous substances. The new legislation will give EPA more power to regulate the use of dangerous chemicals and require manufacturers to submit information proving the safety of every chemical in production and any new chemical seeking to enter the market.

© WOC News

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