New Safe Chemicals Act Shifts Accountability and Burden of Proof to Industry
New Safe Chemicals Act Shifts Accountability and Burden of Proof to IndustryMany people have complained about needing a degree in chemistry to understand which products are safe and which are not. New Safe Chemicals Act may enable the protection we need.
In February we wrote a blog about The Health Case for Reforming the Toxic Substances Control Act, a new health report from Safer Chemicals Healthy Families. See Toxic Chemicals Are Putting Your Children at Risk. The tireless efforts of many people have finally paid off - landmark legislation that completely overhauls the broken system used by government to protect us from toxic chemicals has been introduced in Congress.
Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Congressmen Bobby Rush (D-IL) and Henry Waxman (D-CA) are the authors of the new Safe Chemicals Act, formerly known as the Kid-Safe Chemicals Act.
Here are some of the highlights to give you an idea of what the new law would do:
- (Finally) empower the EPA to regulate toxic chemicals, and act quickly when necessary.
- Ensure the EPA is provided with sufficient information to evaluate the safety of a chemical.
- Establish new research programs to help us understand the risk toxic industrial chemicals pose to children, ourselves, and the environment.
- Force industry to prove their products are safe, both those already on the market and those they introduce in the future. Formerly, the burden of proof was the responsibility of the EPA, which didn’t have the power, information or funding needed to fulfill the obligation.
- Provide the public with transparent and adequate information to make their own judgments and decisions.
The Safe Chemicals Act will “breathe new life into a long-dead statute by empowering EPA to get tough on toxic chemicals,” said Senator Lautenberg.
And that’s exactly what we need to protect ourselves, our children, and our environment.
If you would like to read the bill in its entirety, it’s available here.
Stay tuned for updates!