In the meantime, Jackson said, the EPA will begin to analyze and regulate six high-profile chemicals that have raised health concerns. Included are bisphenol A, or BPA, found in hard, clear polycarbonate bottles, and phthalates, which are used in vinyl and cosmetics.
Also targeted are brominated flame retardants added to electronics and other goods; perfluorinated compounds used in manufacturing non-stick coatings and food packaging; some parafins, used in lubricants, and benzidine dyes and pigments. Many scientists say these chemicals can mimic hormones and obstruct development of fetuses and children, as well as possibly cause reproductive problems, cancer or other health effects.
The EPA will start with the six high-profile chemicals, then add more. EPA officials said they will post four “chemical action plans” in December describing how they will handle the initial compounds, and then post plans for more chemicals in four-month intervals.
Some 80,000 chemicals—some of them widely used in consumer products–are in commerce today, and some lack detailed health and safety data. Jackson said the agency and the manufacturers will review and act on chemicals with the highest priority in a timely manner.
We will keep you informed if any regulatory changes result.
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