Public Health

Media Hit | Public Health

Cleaning up Maryland's air

 

How can we help the next generation breathe easier?

 

On time for this year's Air Quality Awareness Week, Johns Hopkins University's Bloomberg School of Public Health published new research confirming what we already suspected: Exposure to even small amounts of pollution can lead to lifelong respiratory disorders.

A national report issued this week titled What Stinks? Toxic Phthalates in Your Home reveals that a group of toxic chemicals are used in a broader range of household products than previously known, including products by Hallmark Cards, The Gap, True Value, and more.

Resource | Public Health

What Stinks? Toxic Phthalates in your home

Industry information newly required by the State of Maine reveals that hormone-disrupting chemicals known as phthalates (THAL-eights) are found in
more household products than previously known. For the first time, the use of toxic phthalates has been reported in paints, cleaners, disinfectants
and deodorizers. It also has been reported in clothing, shoes, and personal care products.

Strong science shows that even at very low levels of exposure, phthalates--a class of more than 40 closely related chemicals--are linked to reproductive harm, learning disabilities, and asthma and allergies.

Resource | Public Health

Public Comments: Proposed Off-Gassing Regulation Changes

Did you know that Maryland's air quality is one of the worst in North America? Much of our state's ground level pollution is made up of toxic VOCs, or off-gassing.

This year, the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) proposed adopting an updated rule for Volatile Organic Compound (VOCs), which would apply to Maryland commercial and household products and would reduce off-gassing in the state by a projected 6.1 million tons per day. If approved, the regulations will be submitted to the EPA for approval as part of Maryland’s State Implementation Plan to further reduce ground level pollution.

 

Most of us think of ozone as a good thing – but that’s only partially true. Unlike the “good” ozone in the stratosphere that protects us, ground level or “bad” ozone is a colorless gas that forms just above the earth’s surface, where people, animals, and plants live and breathe.  Ground level ozone can cause airway inflammation even in healthy people and affects susceptible populations more.

 

Resource | Public Health

Maryland's proposed 2017 emissions regulations

Ground level ozone is pollution that sits just above the earth’s surface, causing poor air quality and contributing to respiratory issues. As the main component of smog, this type of pollution is not released into the atmosphere itself, but results from a reaction involving volatile organic compounds (VOCs), or ‘off-gassing.’

 

We need sensible toxic chemical reform.

The TSCA Modernization Act, which passed both congressional chambers last year but has yet to become law, makes important updates to the way the EPA restricts toxic chemicals. Unfortunately, the new law could also preclude states from taking action on their own to enact chemical protections.

 A precedent-setting bill to regulate the use of toxic cleaning supplies in daycare centers stalled in the Maryland House of Delegates this legislative session. 

New report finds toxics in cans; industry responds

By | Juliana Bilowich
Public Health Organizer

A public health concern this hazardous deserves some media attention. Thanks to Fox News 45 and WBAL for getting out the word about toxics in food cans: Over 60% of cans tested from across the country – including Maryland – contain the toxic chemical Bisphenol A.

Tips for avoiding BPA in canned food

By | Juliana Bilowich
Public Health Organizer

Until we see federal policy reform and voluntary market-based solutions that provide people with the information they need to make safe and informed purchases of canned food, we recommend consumers do the following:

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