Here in Michigan, our children are exposed to a staggering variety of toxic chemicals every day. Although anyone can be negatively impacted by chemicals, research has shown that children are uniquely vulnerable to the effects of chemical exposure during the periods of fetal, infant, and child development.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which is the agency that is supposed to protect us from toxic chemicals, lacks the information to make sure that potential health and environmental risks of new chemicals are identified. In fact, the EPA has only required testing for less than 200 of the 62,000 chemicals being used under federal rules! As a result, many of us continue to be exposed to toxic chemicals from our air, water and soil every day.
Because this gap in federal law continues to put us at risk for toxic chemical exposure, many state governments, including Michigan's, have sought to deal with the problem by regulating individual chemicals after health risks are recognized. With efforts to regulate individual chemicals underway, groups such as Clean Water Action are also seeking a way to reform state law so that many or all of these toxic chemicals are never used in the first place, leading to a healthier, safer and more environmentally sound state.
Check out more information on our Environmental Health work in Michigan: