Apr 3, 2009 | 13
There are some 82,000 chemicals used commercially in the U.S., but only a fraction have been tested to make sure they're safe and just five are regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), according to congressional investigators. But a government scientist says there's no guarantee testing actually rules out health risks anyway.
The basic premise of safety testing for chemicals is that anything can kill you in high enough doses (even too much water too fast can be lethal). The goal is to find safe levels that cause no harm. But new research suggests that some chemicals may be more dangerous than previously believed at low levels when acting in concert with other chemicals.
"Some chemicals may act in an additive fashion," Linda Birnbaum said this week at a conference held at the Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health at Columbia University. "When we look one compound at a time, we may miss the boat."
Dec 18, 2008 | 6
Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that humans carry phthalates—chemicals used as softeners in plastics and found in everything from pill coatings to nail polish—around in their bodies. A growing number of studies, primarily in rats, show that phthalates cause male reproductive problems—infertility, decreased sperm count, malformation—and can cross the placenta. As a result, the European Union has banned some of them and consumer advocate and environmental groups have called for the U.S. government to do the same.
Today, an advisory panel of scientists, commissioned by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), released a report recommending that the chemicals be assessed as a group for potential risks as soon as possible.
Dec 5, 2008 | 4
Out shopping for toys for those special kiddies in your life who have been nice (and even naughty)? Be careful: some of those would-be stocking stuffers may be toxic. The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Public Citizen yesterday sued the feds to force them to order stores to remove tot's toys and child care products that contain toxic plastics called phthalates from their shelves pronto.
The watchdog groups charge in the complaint filed in Manhattan Federal Court that the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is flouting "the will of Congress'' by allowing retailers to stockpile and continue to sell products from dolls to rubber ducks containing the chemicals after Feb. 10—the date a federally mandated ban on their production and sale is set to take effect—as long as they were manufactured before the deadline.
Deadline: Jun 29 2013
Reward: $7,000 USD
The Seeker for this Challenge desires proposals for chemical methods that could rapidly degrade a dilute aqueous solution
Deadline: Jul 30 2013
Reward: $100,000 USD
The Seeker desires a method for producing pseudoephedrine products in such a way that it will be extremely difficult for clandestine che
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