The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

EWG Public Affairs, (202) 667-6982

NIH Refutes FDA's Claims BPA is Safe for Use


The National Institutes of Health's National Toxicology Program
(NTP) concluded today that bisphenol A (BPA), an artificial sex hormone and
chemical used in hard plastic products like baby bottles may alter brain
development and increase the risk of prostate cancer. The NIH review, which
contradicts a recent FDA assessment based on chemical industry science,
reflects the findings of dozens of independent scientists from around the
globe who have raised questions about the chemical's possible dangers for
more than a decade.

BPA Timeline: From Invention to Phase Out

NTP's assessment that BPA exposure is cause for concern directly refutes
last month's announcement by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which claimed exposure to BPA is
safe for humans. NTP reviewed over 100 independent scientific studies before
reaching its conclusion, while FDA relied solely on three chemical-industry
funded reports, which gave the toxic chemical the thumbs up for use in
consumer products.

"The FDA has no credibility when it comes to BPA safety. The NIH
announcement is yet more confirmation that the FDA is in the pocket of
industry. FDA ignored the nation's top public health scientists, and instead
lauded the benefits of a toxic, hormone disruptor found in virtually every
infant in America," added Wiles. "Now that wrong has been righted."

"Unlike the FDA, NTP has listened to the nation's premier scientists and has
concluded that the BPA threat to the brains, bodies and behavior of our
children must be taken seriously," EWG Executive Director Richard Wiles.
"The agency's stance is measured -- and courageous in the face of the slick,
relentless publicity campaign from the chemical industry, which seems to be
following the tobacco industry's playbook."

The U.S. chemical industry produces an estimated 2.3 billion pounds of BPA
annually to make polycarbonates and epoxy resins, tough, light materials
that are fabricated into a vast array of products, including airplanes,
computer and cell phone parts, paints and coatings, safety helmets and
goggles, dental bonding agents, toys, water and baby bottles and food
packaging. The global market for BPA is estimated at 6 billion pounds, which
translates roughly to $6 billion.

"Consumers deserve straight talk from the government," added Wiles. "The new
NTP assessment tells us that we are right to be concerned about BPA and the
industry1s ongoing chemistry experiment on our kids."

The Environmental Working Group is a community 30 million strong, working to protect our environmental health by changing industry standards.

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