EPA pushes ‘transparency’ rule as science advisors dissent

EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) is meeting June 5-6, 2019 to discuss key issues underlying how the Agency evaluates and uses science in policy decisions. Dr. Tracey Woodruff, Professor and Director at the University of California, San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, gave this statement: Listening to today's EPA meeting with its … Continue reading EPA pushes ‘transparency’ rule as science advisors dissent

The Deadly Omission in EPA’s Methylene Chloride Rule

In October 2017, Drew Wynne, 31, succumbed to methylene chloride fumes while removing paint from the floors of his coffee company. This was almost a year after EPA proposed but refused to finalize a rule to ban methylene chloride paint strippers (“2017 rule”) which could have prevented his death. When EPA finalized their rule in … Continue reading The Deadly Omission in EPA’s Methylene Chloride Rule

House investigates EPA’s failures on workers and toxic chemicals

The House Energy & Commerce sub-committee on Environment and Climate Change is holding a hearing on “Mismanaging Chemical Risks: EPA’s Failure to Protect Workers.” Dr. Tracey Woodruff, Professor and Director at the University of California, San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, gave this statement: "The science is clear: workers face disproportionately high … Continue reading House investigates EPA’s failures on workers and toxic chemicals

ROBINS-E: Good Studies Gone Bad

Assessing environmental hazards often requires the evaluating a diverse body of evidence of varying quality. It is critical to consider the credibility of the individual studies used in the evaluation to reach conclusions through a consistent, transparent, and empirically-demonstrated methods such as those used in systematic review. The GRADE Working Group recently released one such … Continue reading ROBINS-E: Good Studies Gone Bad

Paint strippers need informed solutions, not regrettable substitution

Methylene chloride is a chemical used in paint strippers that is bad for the environment and very toxic — it can even kill you. Methylene chloride is dangerous for workers and consumers and we need safer strippers- but my new research shows the dark side of making a substitution without a careful evaluation. My colleagues from … Continue reading Paint strippers need informed solutions, not regrettable substitution

EPA assessment should be called Pigment “Violate” the science

One of EPA’s core responsibilities under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is to protect public health by evaluating chemicals and limiting the risky ones. EPA recently released step one in this process-- its first chemical evaluation since TSCA was reformed in 2016, on the chemical Pigment Violet 29.  Unfortunately, our analysis found alarmingly poor … Continue reading EPA assessment should be called Pigment “Violate” the science

EPA ignoring major risks in chemical assessments

1,4-dioxane is a cancer-causing chemical contaminating drinking water in Michigan, a situation local officials are calling “a slow-motion environmental disaster,” and significant problem with the water supply. Yet, despite such clear and acknowledged dangers, EPA will ignore 1,4-dioxane in people’s drinking water entirely in its health risk evaluation under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). … Continue reading EPA ignoring major risks in chemical assessments

EPA’s unwritten policy on chemical data: don’t ask, don’t tell

There are almost 40,000 chemicals in commerce, and EPA needs to take action to limit those that are dangerous. That’s why the reformed Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) directs EPA to select (through a prioritization process as shown below) 20 “high-priority,” potentially risky chemicals by the end of next year for assessment. To make informed … Continue reading EPA’s unwritten policy on chemical data: don’t ask, don’t tell

What causes so much preterm birth in Fresno County?

Fresno County, in the San Joaquin Valley of California (CA) has significantly higher levels of preterm birth than the rest of California (12.1% compared to 9.6% in CA in 2012)—but why? Preterm birth happens when babies are born too soon, before 37 weeks gestation, and factors including environmental pollution may contribute. We wanted to understand … Continue reading What causes so much preterm birth in Fresno County?