BPA ban to be added to US food safety bill - ACC official

11 June 2010 00:39  [Source: ICIS news]

MYRTLE BEACH, South Carolina (ICIS news)--A new effort to ban bisphenol-A (BPA) from children's products will surface in the US Congress imminently, an American Chemistry Council (ACC) official said on Thursday.

The measure would be tacked on to food safety legislation, said Rudy Underwood, the ACC's government lobbyist on state affairs. He charged the effort would be inappropiate.

Senator Barbara Boxer (Democrat-California), would put the amendment forward, he predicted.

A telephone call to Boxer's office went unanswered, and a search of her official website for BPA brought no results.

Some US states and European countries have already initiated measures to ban or restrict  BPA, following a wave of intensely negative media attention to the product in 2009.

In a speech to the Southeast Chemical Conference in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Underwood bemoaned the anti-chemical sentiment that he said pervaded political circles.

While he stressed that his remarks were not intended to be partisan, he said the pronounced change started in 2006 - the year that the Democrats won control of Congress.

Underwood charged that many other more senior political leaders - including former Houston mayor Bill White (a Democrat), who is seeking election as governor of Texas - have shown no interest in listening to economic arguments in defence of the chemical industry, Underwood said.

"You can talk about closing plants, you can talk about losing jobs, they just don't care," Underwood said.

White said in his campaign website that Texas’ “future economic growth depends on attracting businesses and workers to our state, and that requires a clean environment”.

Underwood urged members of the industry to get involved in grass-roots campaigns to counteract the many individuals who are actively opposed to chemicals.

"We really need more ground troops," he said.

The ACC has a website at www.impactchemistry.com makes it easy for individuals to get messages to members of Congress. Underwood said a major improvement to that site will be unveiled on 15 June.

To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect

By: Stephen Burns
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