Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)
There are currently tens of thousands of chemicals in commerce in the U.S. and only a tiny fraction of them have been tested for safety.
Under our nation’s key chemical safety law, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the Environmental Protection Agency has banned only five chemicals.
In 2016, after a years-long legislative process in which Safer Chemicals Healthy Families and our partners took a leadership role, Congress passed a bipartisan update to TSCA called the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act (LCSA).
Since LCSA was signed into law, we have been working to protect American families’ health by advocating for EPA to implement the new law with the strength that Congress intended. For more detailed information, see our archive of information and comments to EPA on the act.
PFAS: per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances
For decades, the chemical industry has pushed the use of PFAS chemicals in a variety of products for their nonstick and waterproof properties. And now these toxic chemicals are all around us. They’re in our drinking water, food, and house dust. They’re in most of our bodies. Studies have found them in the blood of nearly every American tested, including newborns.
These synthetic chemicals have been linked to increased risks of certain cancers, reduced birth weight, and reduced hormone levels. They don’t break down in the environment—so levels will only get higher over time if their use continues.
We support federal actions that
- Regulate the class of PFAS chemicals
- Phase out the use of fluorinated firefighting foams and identify safer alternatives.
- Prohibit the use of PFAS as food additives or in food packaging
- Provide information on where and how PFAS are used in the United States.
- Provide states with analytical methods for identifying all PFAS in water and soil, and technical assistance on how to clean it up.
- Provide states and local communities with funding for cleanup and water treatment
- Ensure that all responsible polluters pay for cleanup
- Ensure that water and food are comprehensively tested for PFAS
- Regulate PFAS under the Clean Water Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (Superfund), the Toxic Release Inventory, and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
For some of our recent policy accomplishments, visit our Successes page. For recent posts about Public Policy, see below.