How a handful of consultants used Big Tobacco's tactics to sow doubt about science and hold off regulation of BPA, a chemical in hundreds of products that could be harming an entire generation.
Wow. After years of following this ugly controversy, it was nothing less than a relief to see the under belly of the beast laid bare. Mr. Case takes an issue complicated by contrary voices, conflicts of interest and billions of dollars, and presents it in a straight forward, common sense manner for all to see.
I found it intriguing to see the author's take on how the government might react to the growing evidence of harm caused by BPA:
You might expect the government to start controlling the use of BPA, but the track record suggests otherwise. The United States has a long tradition of keeping harmful substances — lead, DDT, tobacco, PCBs — on the market for decades after scientists find adverse effects.
What are we to do in the meantime? Mr. Case suggests that we only have two options:
- Trust that the chemical industry has our best interests at heart
- Take precautions: in its report, the NIH's National Toxicology Program advised “concerned parents” to reduce their use of canned foods; use BPA-free baby bottles; and opt for glass, porcelain, or stainless-steel containers, particularly for hot foods and liquids.
In the closing paragraph of the article, we're left with stunning insight into the scientific community's thoughts concerning the NIH statement:
Independent scientists applauded, though many of them contend that the advice should have been even more strongly worded — and would have been, were the agency not constrained by the industry-funded science.
As the battle between the multi-billion dollar chemical industry and health advocates calling for regulation rages on, parents are left to educate themselves. I can't emphasize enough how important it is to invest some time in reading the full article.
>> READ an easy to understand synopsis of the article written by Janelle of Healthy Child Healthy World HERE.