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EPA bows to chemical industry lobbyists, fires top expert on flame retardents' dangers
by unmanaged at 3:53 pm EST, Feb 29, 2008

At the request of chemical industry lobbyists, the Environmental Protection Agency removed the chair of an expert peer review panel charged with setting safe exposure levels for a toxic fire retardant that contaminates human blood and breast milk, this according to a report from the Environmental Working Group.

The panel was convened by EPA to report to the agency on environment and health concerns of Decabromodiphenyl or Deca. It is a spin off from chemical fire retardants and used in electronic components and other consumer products. The chemical has been shown to be a developmental neurotoxin.

It was the American Chemical Council, the industry's major lobbyist, that pressured EPA to remove Dr. Deborah Rice from the panel.

Rice, retired EPA scientist, is credited by many in the public health community for doing the leading work in researching Deca's toxicity to the brain and nervous system during development. Now with the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Rice also spearheaded a regulatory review mandated by Maine law, to investigate the feasibility of replacing Deca with less toxic chemicals.

Big $$$ shut her up... Welcome to America...

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