21st Century Pollution

In 1976 when the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), our nation’s main chemical safety law was passed, 62,000 chemicals were already in use. All of these chemicals were grandfathered by TSCA; that means they were simply presumed to be safe, and EPA was given no mandate to determine whether they are actually safe. Even to require testing of these chemicals under TSCA, EPA must first provide evidence that the chemical may pose a risk – a toxic Catch-22.



Chemical manufacturers have provided little or no information to the EPA regarding their potential health or environmental impacts of the 22,000 chemicals introduced since 1976.  These chemicals are found in toys and other children’s products, cleaning and personal care items, furniture, electronics, food and beverage containers, building materials, fabrics, and car interiors. 1) http://www.nrdc.org/health/toxics.asp

  • Does exposure to these toxic chemicals present any health risks?
  • Do even low doses of certain chemicals, particularly in the womb or during early childhood, disturb hormonal, reproductive, or immune system response?
  • Will multiple chemicals act together and present harm to human health?
  • Many toxic chemicals can persist in the environment, for decades sometimes, building up in the food chain and in our bodies, are cancer, learning disabilities, asthma, birth defects, and other reproductive problems all associated, to some degree, with exposure to these toxic chemicals?

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