By Colin Hartke

Community members living in affordable housing and construction workers building affordable housing in Washington State are left vulnerable to toxic chemicals under a recently updated regulation. The Department of Commerce (DOC) has released an update to the Evergreen Sustainable Development Standard (ESDS). It’s the state-wide regulation that must be followed for construction and remodeling of affordable housing that gets state funding, and the updated version lacks important protections from dangerous toxics. Continue reading 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Gretchen Salter, Safer States, 206- 619-0973

(Portland, OR) –States are stepping up to protect public health from harmful chemicals, according to an analysis by Safer States. The analysis found that at least 29 states will consider more than 180 policies to require companies to disclose what is in their products as well as limit exposures to toxic chemicals. These policies include bans on PFAS in food packaging and firefighting foam as well as bans on toxic flame retardants in electronics. The analysis, including a searchable database, is available online at SaferStates.org/bill-tracker.

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As consumers increasingly demand less toxic products and laws require the use of safer chemicals, retailers are requiring suppliers to stop using harmful chemicals in consumer products.

Chemicals included in these voluntary phaseouts include four classes of chemicals that have emerged as a particular concern for the health of both humans and wildlife: PFAS, toxic flame retardants, phthalates, and APEs.

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Harmful toxic chemicals added to consumer products, like TVs or carpeting, can escape the product and contaminate our homes, food, breastmilk, and bodies. The same toxic chemicals, including toxic flame retardants, phthalates, and nonstick PFAS, are making their way into the environment and affecting the health of orcas, their young, and their food sources too. Continue reading 

Seattle – Today, Governor Inslee’s Southern Resident Killer Whale Task Force released its recommendations for protecting the endangered southern resident orca population, including recommendations for reducing threats posed by toxic contaminants. Toxic pollution is one of the major threats to orcas, not only affecting orca health but also the availability of their favored food source, Chinook salmon.  Continue reading