toxic chemicals

Resuscitating Obama’s Environmental Legacy

Trump has had a single-minded focus on eliminating any traces of Obama’s presidency. But it’s not too late to turn the tide.

We’ve now had nearly four years of Trump’s all-out war on environmental protection. Trump has single-mindedly tried  to wipe out every trace of Obama’s legacy.  It’s time to see what’s left of Obama’s achievements. And what could a new President do to revive his legacy? In a Legal Planet post a week before the last …


Updates on the War on Science

The Trump Administration continues its campaign to suppress science.

The Trump Administration’s hostile attitude toward science has continued unabated.  The Administration has used a triad of strategies: efforts to defund research, suppression of scientific findings, and embrace of fringe science.    Budget.Administration continues to favor deep cuts in research support.  Its initial 2020 budget proposal calls for  a 13% cut to the National Science Foundation, a 12% cut at …


2016: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

“But except for that, how did you like the play, Mrs. Lincoln?” It’s an old joke, for all I know going back to 1865. That was 2016,too, in a way. Like Mrs. Lincoln’s evening at Ford’s Theater, 2016 contained a lot of good things, some bad things, and then disaster. Here’s a list of each. The …


The Unreasonable Risk of TSCA Reform

Caught Between a Rock and a Hard Place

The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act is no doubt generating significant conflict, including claims of undue industry influence, competing bills from prominent members of the same party, consternation among states, and divisions among health and environmental groups.  And it may also be the closest we have gotten to TSCA reform—ever.  …


Is TSCA Reform on the Way?

The Toxic Substances Control Act or TSCA (sometimes pronounced “Tosca,” like the opera) is one of the worst-written statutes of all time.  It seems as if every section contains a cross-reference to another section, which in turn requires recourse to yet another sentence to be understood, making the statute completely opaque.  A last-minute compromise, the …


Reforming Prop 65

With all the attention being paid to proposals to reform the California Environmental Quality Act in the state legislature, there is another landmark California environmental law that the legislature and Governor Brown are thinking of changing.  In 1986, the voters of California enacted Proposition 65.  The law requires notification to consumers and the public about …


Health and Superfund

I belatedly happened across an interesting paper by Michael Greenstone.  The Abstract summarizes the key finding: We are the first to examine the effect of Superfund cleanups on infant health rather than focusing on proximity to a site. We study singleton births to mothers residing within 5km of a Superfund site between 1989-2003 in five …


New Pritzker Brief on Green Chemistry

If you have not yet seen it, I encourage you to check out our newest Pritzker Policy Brief, on California’s Green Chemistry regulations. Written by our own Timothy Malloy, Toxics in Consumer Products takes a critical look at these new regulations. Fellow blogger Matt Kahn mentioned the other day that he was a big fan of California’s …


National Conversation on Chemical Exposure Drafts Available

I previously wrote about the National Conversation on Public Health and Chemical Exposures, the effort by the CDC and ATSDR to develop recommendations for action regarding chemical exposures.  The National Conversation  formed a series of work groups to focus on a set of specific areas, and develop draft recommendations.  Today through September 20th, the draft …


Toxic Chemicals (3)

This is the third (and for now, the last) in a series of posts on toxic chemicals.  Like the earlier two, it addresses a recent paper on the subject, This one, by Vermont’s Martha Judy and RFF’s Katherine Probst, is about “Superfund at 30.” Superfund — more officially the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Clean-up …