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Bill Would Ban Children's Cups Containing BPA

BPA Linked to Several Health Problems

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- There's a push in Annapolis to ban a toxic chemical that is used in making children's sippy cups and baby bottles.

The chemical Bisphenol A, or BPA, has been linked in studies to a number of health problems in children, including cancer.

New mother and MaryPIRG Director Johanna Neuman is backing the bill that would ban the sale of products that contain BPA in Maryland.

"We've tested all three of these and they all have BPA in them. As a consumer, you would have no idea," she said. "They aren't labeled, but even just the fact that you can get a baby bottle that contains toxic chemicals that could leach into the milk or formula is outrageous. We really hope that the General Assembly takes action this year."

According to bill supporters, more than 200 studies have linked very low doses of BPA to cancers, impaired immune function, obesity and diabetes. Pediatrician Dr. Lorne Garrettson, who supports the bill, said most adults have BPA in their system, but children are at a greater risk.

"Our most exposed people have been our youngest and most vulnerable," he said.

Twenty states have introduced legislation to restrict the uses of BPA, and bill sponsor Sen. Brian Frosh said he wants Maryland to be next.

"We want to make sure that kids growing up in Maryland are safe and healthy," said Frosh, D-Montgomery County.

Large retailers and some bottle makers are marketing bottles and sippy cups as BPA-free, but advocates said that doesn't go far enough.

"It doesn't go far enough because they aren't required to that," Frosh said.

"MaryPIRG, later this spring, is going to release a study of basically testing items labeled as BPA-free to see whether, in fact, those claims are true," Neuman said.

The bill has broad support, according to 11 News. No one signed up to testify in opposition.

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