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We at ACSH have written countless pieces on the absolute garbage science surrounding BPA a chemical that has been in use for more than 50 years, and is used in the manufacturing process of various plastics.

So, it is only natural that we give a huge shout-out to Trevor Butterworth, a journalist and master junk science (especially statistics)...

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) filed a lawsuit against the FDA on Tuesday for what it deems the agency’s unsatisfactory regulation of BPA.

Maintaining that the NRDC suit is simply media grandstanding, ACSH’s Dr. Elizabeth Whelan points out that the “FDA has studied BPA through and through and has decided that it is safe enough to remain on the market. This isn’t a decision they made arbitrarily or capriciously — it was based on decades’ worth of scientific data.”

An article in The New Yorker by Harvard Medical School professor Dr. Jerome Groopman quotes ACSH's Dr. Elizabeth Whelan extensively. In the article, titled "Plastic Panic: How worried should we be about everyday chemicals? Dr. Groopman examines the charges against BPA and phthalates and concludes the evidence of their health consequences is "far from conclusive."

Dr. Whelan s comments included:

People fear what they can t see and don t understand. Some environmental activists emotionally manipulate parents, making them feel that the ones they love the most, their children, are in danger. Whelan argues...

 

Mid adult Hispanic male wearing lab coat shrugging, isolated on white background Photo: labullitin.com

No- this not a spinoff of Survivor in which the goal is to stay alive without the benefit of a new phone, plastic tooth- and toilet brushes, Tupperware, and laundry baskets.

It could be, except reality TV isn't exactly reality, but the attempts of an Austrian family of five to spend six years trying to avoid contact with any plastic are very real (1).

I'll leave it to you to...

This morning, the folks who produce NBC's Today show allowed me six seconds (out of a six-minute segment) to comment on an astoundingly alarmist and unscientific "report" on the alleged dangers of plastic water bottles.

The precise target of this junk-science assault was bisphenol A (BPA), a component of some types of polycarbonate plastic bottles. In fact, BPA is near-ubiquitous in our environment, and we all have tiny amounts of this (and many, many other) synthetic chemicals in our bodies. These trace amounts do not pose any health threat -- but try telling that to those who want to scare us all into a tizzy with such (untrue) "science and health" stories. My brief appearance...

NYT on FDA on BPA
The New York Times features an editorial highlighting the “murky” language of the FDA's recent opinion on bisphenol-A (BPA), with tips on how to avoid the chemical and emphasis on the uncertainty of “how dangerous the chemical might be in the small amounts that leach out and are imbibed by infants and older people -- or how rigorously it should be regulated.”

“There comes a point when the momentum against something is so great that it's impossible to...

138829_6871For years, various environmental and academic groups have been desperately trying to explain how it can be that high doses of chemicals (a common target: bisphenol-A, BPA), referred to as endocrine disruptors, have little or no adverse effects in rodents, but low doses can pose risks?

Rather than give up, they have persisted to the point where they made up an entirely new (and well beyond irrational) hypothesis, based on faulty (to say the least) science. Rather, they should have raised the white flag and conceded, Well, we really screwed this up, guys. Let s move on.

...

Senator Diane Feinstein of California has called on Congress to ban bisphenol-A (BPA) from all food and beverage containers.

"Thanks to BPA, botulism from industrially canned food products has disappeared over the past thirty years," says Dr. Whelan. "This is a perfect example of a case of banning a substance with no regard for the benefits it provides."

Dr. Ross adds, "This is the same Senator Feinstein that was largely responsible for the bizarre, counterproductive, and baseless Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act of 2008 which bans lead and phthalates even at minuscule levels from any product that might be sold to children under the age of 12, and had the unfortunate effect of driving many small businesses out of business due to the extremely strict lead...

Disaster in Haiti
ACSH staffers are distraught by the tragedy in Haiti in the aftermath of the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck Tuesday evening about sixteen miles outside of the capital city of Port-au-Prince.

“The number one concern for the relief effort right now is clean water,” says ACSH's Dr. Elizabeth Whelan. “The survivors don't have clean, safe water, and it's horrible to say but the corpses lying around will continue to contaminate what supply there is. Terrible diseases often follow disasters of this sort. Incredible though it seems, there can be more devastation following...

'Out of the frying pan and into the fire' and 'the cure may be worse than the disease' are two colloquialisms for how EPA's worrisome ban-first-study-later policies may be doing more harm than good.

Specifically, the rush away from BPA is not justified by science, though of course companies can drop anything they want in a free market. Even the European Food Safety Authority agrees BPA is harmless, and they once declared that water does not cure thirst and that ugly fruit should not be sold so convincing them to be against the science consensus is quite easy.

At National Review, Henry I. Miller and Angela Logomasini...