December 24, 2009 The FDA has promised to reassess the safety of BPA — a widely used plastic additive that can act like estrogen in the body. Currently, the agency's position is that BPA exposure is too low to cause health effects, but some major studies of the chemical's safety are just beginning.
October 30, 2009 Plastics have been touted as a miracle material by some, and criticized as artificial and toxic by others. But, nowadays, it's hard to imagine life without plastics: Cars, textiles, televisions, computers and food containers all have plastic parts. But synthetic plastics are a relatively new invention; production of consumer plastics didn't really take off until after World War II.
May 19, 2009 For decades, people have been alarmed about possible effects on humans — particularly developing embryos and new babies — from plastic additives called phthalates. One doctor is studying a group of infants exposed to high levels of phthalates from the medical tubing in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit.
April 15, 2009 Sen. Dianne Feinstein invoked the "precautionary principle" when she introduced a bill a few weeks ago to ban a plastic additive called bisphenol A from food and drink containers. She said if we can't prove a chemical is safe, we shouldn't use it. But experts say that's an extreme interpretation —and impossible to follow.
April 1, 2009 The federal ban on chemicals in kids' plastic toys isn't necessary, say some government scientists. Despite alarm stemming from animal studies, tests with children show they don't absorb enough of the plastic softeners called phthalates to even approach a health risk.
July 29, 2008 House and Senate lawmakers have said they took a step toward banning some types of phthalates, a family of chemicals found in many soft children's toys. So what are they, and why should (or shouldn't) parents be worried?
July 29, 2008 Lawmakers on Monday moved toward banning phthalates, a type of chemical used as plastic softeners and found in all kinds of children's toys. The move is part of a broader bill that overhauls the nation's product safety laws in the wake of last year's wave of toy recalls.