Sunday, October 17, 2010

Politics, Money, Chemicals, Health and the Environment

Oh Canada
has declared BPA . . . (fit that into the music for the national anthem) to be a toxicant.  That does make sense, given the growing body of evidence that it is an endocrine disruptor that produces wide-ranging effects in test animals and is positively correlated with adverse effects in humans.  It is also usual for industries involved in production, use and distribution of chemicals found to have strong potential for causing health problems in humans to argue with scientists and regulatory personnel and to try to convince the population at large that there is nothing wrong with their products.  I wonder if this is simply characteristic of democracies.  I'm sure graft and favoritism plays a role in other systems of government (and in ours as well).  Part of me is just morbidly fascinated with how truth, logic and fairness are knotted up into some very twisted wads. 

A spokesman for the BPA people is claiming that BPA is safe and that Canada's decision will only alarm and confuse the public.   (I do agree that no one should have to go grocery shopping in an alarmed and confused state of mind . . . that's how products like "Lunchables" are purchased).  You can read the American Chemistry Council statement here where it claims that the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) confirms the safety of BPA and that Canada's decision flies in the face of "World Wide Scientific Evidence".   Funny Funny. In fact the EFSA is stating that there is no compelling evidence that the Tolerable Daily Intake should be changed from its current level.  This is a far cry from stating that BPA is safe. 

Some legitimate arguments in BPAs favor is that it makes food packaging and transport safer and more economical.  This does have economic and social value.  But please, let's honor good work done and the validity of concerns for human and environmental health.

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