Author archives: Green Science Policy Institute

Study: PFAS in Carpets a Major Exposure Source for Children

Children can be exposed to a toxic medley of per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) from carpets, according to a peer-reviewed study published today in Chemosphere. But the good news is that daycares, schools, and families can eliminate this exposure source by replacing older carpets. Most carpet manufacturers recently stopped using PFAS, which were formerly applied to carpets to make them stain- and soil-resistant. Retailers like The Home Depot and Lowe’s now only sell PFAS-free carpets. …

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March 2020: Why Soap Works Best

The Green Science Policy Institute and I hope you are staying safe and well during these very challenging times. Our team has been working remotely and doing video meetings, sometimes with kids or cats on our laps. An interesting change to share our pets, families, and inside of our homes during our many calls.…

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Organophosphate Esters in Drinking Water: Prevention and Removal

Organophosphate esters (OPEs) are some of the most commonly used flame retardants in consumer products today, especially electronics. OPE exposure has been linked to a number of different health effects, from cancer to reduced fertility to behavioral problems (such as aggression or difficulty paying attention) in children.…

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Communities Petition EPA to Regulate Hazardous PFAS Chemicals

January 15, 2020

How are an indigenous tribal leader from an Arctic community, a North Carolina Sunday School teacher, a Michigan attorney, a Colorado community leader, and two suburban mothers from outside of Philadelphia united in an effort that could impact the drinking water and health of everyone in the U.S.?

Today they joined scientists from the Green Science Policy Institute in petitioning the EPA to list hundreds of PFAS (per- and polyfluorinated chemicals) as hazardous wastes under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). The petitioners are being represented by the University of California Berkeley Environmental Law Clinic.…

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Scientists Celebrate PFAS Victories in NDAA

December 17, 2019

The U.S. Senate today approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which contains groundbreaking provisions to reduce harm from the “forever chemicals” PFAS that are contaminating the drinking water of millions of Americans. These include nationwide water testing for PFAS by the U.S. Geological Survey and phasing out PFAS in military firefighting foam. The president is expected to sign the bill into law before the end of the year.…

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New Flame Retardants, Old Problems: Replacement Flame Retardants Present Serious Risks

October 22, 2019

New flame retardants escaping from our TVs, other electrical and electronic products, and children’s car seats are just as toxic as the flame retardants they’re intended to replace, according to a peer-reviewed study published today in Environmental Science & Technology Letters. The authors found that the replacement chemicals, called organophosphate flame retardants, have been associated with lower IQ in children, reproductive problems, and other serious health harms.…

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Congress opens the door for fluorine-free firefighting foams

On October 5, federal legislation was enacted which will allow commercial airports in the U.S. to use firefighting foams without PFAS.  Until now, FAA rules have required airports to use firefighting foams that meet the U.S. military’s specification, which requires the use of PFAS.  Firefighting foam is a major source of PFAS contamination, so this should mean healthier drinking water for those living near airports.…

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On America Recycles Day, What Goes Around Comes Around, & It Might Be Toxic

Thursday, November 15 is America Recycles Day, when we celebrate the individuals, recycling companies, and governments that are diverting millions of pounds of materials otherwise headed to landfills.
But there can be a hidden danger in recycling. For example, millions of pounds of toxic flame retardants are added to furniture foam, plastic TV cases and other electronics. Recycled plastic containing flame retardants can end up in unlikely and undesirable places. Flame retardants have been found in lunch boxes, children’s toys, and even soup ladles. What’s worse, they can move from the ladle into the broth, making “toxic chemical soup” less of a metaphor and more of a frightening reality.…

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