NY Considers BPA Legislation

Lawmakers and environmental advocates are urging New York’s Governor David Paterson to sign a bill banning <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/toxic_substances">bisphenol-A—commonly known as BPA—in sippy cups, pacifiers, and other products geared to children, said WGRZ. The legislation passed with a unanimous vote in the Senate and Assembly this week.

A polycarbonate plastic, BPA is found in nearly every consumer product and most canned foods and is also found in beverage cans, a wide array of plastic products, dental sealants, thermal paper, and resins used in nautical paint, an issue in our aquatic environment.

Despite that industry has long maintained BPA is safe at current levels, science continues to point to the many adverse effects linked to the ubiquitous, polycarbonate compound.

BPA is known to imitate the hormone estrogen, acts as an anti-androgen, and is also known to affect sexual development and processes, especially in developing fetuses, infants, and children. Many, many hundreds of studies have linked BPA to 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, and erectile dysfunction and male sexual problems. In urine tests, BPA is found in the overwhelming majority of Americans, more than 93 percent and, significantly, the chemical is found in 90 percent of all newborns.

If the governor passes the legislation, which would become effective December 1st, it would ban the “manufacture, distribution, and sale” of products made with BPA that are meant for children age three and younger, said WGRZ.

“This passage of the BPA bill is just one part of our efforts to make sure that when parents are going to the supermarket or to a corner store or to a discount store in the state of New York, that they are not buying baby bottles and pacifiers and sippy cups that will harm their children,” said Senate Environmental Conservation Committee Chairman Antoine Thompson (Democrat-Buffalo), one of the bill’s sponsors, quoted WGRZ.

According to WGRZ, some 18 additional states are looking into similar legislation, said Assemblyman Steven Englebright (Democrat-Suffolk County), said WGRZ. Englebright sponsored the legislation in his house, added WGRZ. Rockland, Albany, Schenectady, and Suffolk counties, all in NY, have enacted similar laws restricting the use of BPA in sippy cup and baby bottles, said WGRZ, citing the bill’s sponsors. The states of Connecticut, Maryland, Minnesota, Washington, and Wisconsin have also adopted similar laws, added the sponsors.

The BBC previously wrote that BPA has been banned or limited in three countries: Canada, Denmark, and France. Bans are also in place in Australia, and New Zealand and last year, the World Health Organization (WHO) said it would be launching a study to look at the health effects of BPA, wrote TimesArgus.

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