Washington State Senate Okays BPA Ban

The Washington State Senate just approved a BPA ban in a 36-to-9 vote, the Seattle Times just. <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/toxic_substances">Bisphenol A—BPA—will be banned in baby bottles and sippy cups, as well as food containers intended for children aged three and younger, added the paper.

According to the Seattle Times, the House also passed another, similar measure last week that included a BPA ban on reusable-plastic sports bottles. Although the Senate and House need to iron out the two bills’ differences, it is believed that Washington State will be the third state—following Connecticut and Massachusetts—to ban BPA in some products, reported the Seattle Times. Other states are scheduled to undergo similar debates.

The bills passed by both houses would take effect in the summer of 2011 and could result in fines for retailers and manufacturers violating the ban, explained the Seattle Times. Senator Karen Keiser (Democrat-Kent), head of the Health and Long-Term Care Committee, said, “This is not a huge step”; however, “It is a first step. It’s a statement,” quoted the Seattle Times.

Most recently, said Science Daily, a research team from Peninsula Medical School and the University of Exeter, United Kingdom, found a link between the estrogenic chemical and cardiovascular disease and that urinary BPA levels were one-third lower than those reported in 2003-2004; however, higher BPA concentrations in urine were connected with cardiovascular disease in 2005-2006, as well as to some liver enzymes, said Science Daily. The team’s 2008 paper was the first to link BPA and heart diseases, said Science Daily, noting that this new information confirms those findings.

A different, recently published study just linked the chemical to intestinal problems. That study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy Sciences Journal revealed the hormone mimicker does, in fact, cause harm to intestines, said MLive.com, which noted that intestines are the first organ in contact with the chemical following ingestion of BPA. Another study, conducted by the Yale School of Medicine, found that “nonhuman primates” exposed to BPA levels deemed safe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) experienced “interference with brain cell connections” that appeared to be BPA-associated, said Daily Finance previously.

BPA was developed in the 1930s as an estrogenic mimicker and appears to cause significant disruption to the body’s endocrine system. 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. Given that BPA has been connected to increased risks of brain, reproductive, cardiac, and immune system diseases and disorders; problems with liver function testing; interruptions in chemotherapy treatment; and links with serious health problems, this is a serious issue.

Studies have overwhelmingly found BPA to have negative effects at doses lower than current Food & Drug Administration standards; retention in the body longer than was previously believed; leeching into liquids being held in containers regardless of the containers’ temperature; and longer lasting damage, which some feel can be passed to future generations. Recent reports link high levels of exposure to BPA to erectile dysfunction and other sexual problems in males.

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