Delaware Close to Banning BPA in Plastic Bottles, Cups

Should Delaware Governor Jack Markell sign the bill, BPA will be banned from plastic bottles and cups sold in Delaware. <"">Bisphenol A—BPA—is a plastic hardening chemical whose ubiquity is legendary and which has been linked to a continually broadening list of adverse health effects and consumer products.

Delaware Online wrote that the bill was approved by the General Assembly this week and, if passed, would ban the sale of “baby bottles, sippy cups and other children’s products containing” BPA. The bill would become effective July 2012.

Representative. Rebecca D. Walker and Senator Bethany A. Hall-Long, both registered nurses, co-sponsored the bill. Representative Walker discussed the issues surrounding BPA leeching out of plastic when heated and that federal regulators continue to study the issue, wrote Delaware Online. “Local retailers like Target, Toys ‘R Us, Kids ‘R Us, Walmart, and Sears have banned the products already,” Representative Walker said. “Larger businesses willingly stand behind it,” she added, quoted Delaware Online.

Canada banned BPA from baby bottles in 2008 and several countries—Canada, France, and Denmark—followed. Other bans are in progress or being considered in the U.S. For instance, Oregon continues to seek a BPA ban as well as an additional rule: That manufacturers include that items containing BPA have that indicated on labels and packaging. As of the last count, 9 states banned BPA in baby bottles; Connecticut and Vermont banned BPA from infant-formula cans and baby-food jars and Washington was implementing a two-part ban. Several U.S. entities placed limits on the toxin’s use.

A federal BPA bill had been under consideration but the bill has stalled and the federal government is leaving the issue to states to handle independently, said Delaware Online, which noted that the Delaware bill is being modeled on Minnesota legislation with Delaware being the 10th state to pass the law. If signed into law, the bill—which is supported by the American Medical Association, the Breast Cancer Society, and the National Pediatric Association—will mandate stores remove BPA-containing products from their shelves by July 2012, explained Delaware Online.

Last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) stated that the chemical, in use since the 1960s, has potential links to health problems and additional studies are warranted, said Delaware Online. “This is not something where we can wait for the federal government to step up and take action,” Walker said, quoted Delaware Online.

BPA works in the body as an anti-androgen, a substance that blocks hormone activity, and mimics estrogen, a powerful female hormone. Because of this, BPA affects, even interrupts, sexual development and processes, especially in developing fetuses, infants, and children.

Linked to toxic injury and life threatening illnesses in many hundreds of studies, BPA has been implicated in cardiovascular disease, intestinal problems, brain cell connection interference, increased risks of reproductive and immune system diseases and disorders, problems with liver function testing, interruptions in chemotherapy treatment, premature puberty, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and other female fertility and endocrine issues, and erectile dysfunction and male sexual problems.

A human study linked BPA to sperm health issues and an emerging study on which we just wrote noted that research has long underestimated BPA levels in the human body given how testing has been conducted. When studies mirror actual exposure based on typical use of traditional consumer products, the outcomes for BPA levels are staggering.

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