Court Upholds BPA Health Warning

Oakland, CA-In a major victory for public health, a California court yesterday upheld the state scientists’ finding that the disease-causing plastic chemical Bisphenol A (BPA) is known to cause reproductive health problems. The chemical industry brought the suit challenging the state’s science after BPA was added to California’s Prop 65 list of harmful chemicals in April 2013. The ruling will reinstate the state’s decision to list BPA under the state’s Prop 65 consumer protection law, and require companies to warn consumers when their products can expose them to BPA.

“We applaud the court for upholding science in the face of this unfounded challenge from the chemical industry. Hundreds of scientific studies for more than a decade have shown the potential for BPA to pose serious health problems,” said Michael Green, Executive Director of the Center for Environmental Health. “Consumers deserve to know when products are exposing them to harmful chemicals like BPA.

In a comment sent to the state just this week, CEH supported the decision to add BPA to the Prop 65 list, and called on the state EPA to also add several “chemical cousins” of BPA to the Prop 65 list. As CEH noted in the letter to CalEPA,

BPA is a well-studied chemical, and multiple recent peer-reviewed laboratory studies have shown that low levels of exposure during pregnancy cause a variety of important health problems in offspring. These problems include abnormal development of the brain, breast, and ovaries, as well as changes in behavior and reduced ability to fend off infections. These effects occur at levels of exposure that are seen in people today.

Days before the state added BPA to the Prop 65 list in April 2013, CEH and a group of 22 independent scientists and researches sent a letter to CalEPA urging them to address the potential for health problems from low-dose exposures to the chemical. CEH is now calling on CalEPA to consider such exposures in the re-listing.

The case decided yesterday is American Chemistry Council v Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, et al., Sacramento County case number 34-2013-00140720. See the full ruling here.

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