April 16, 2008

Quirky Canada Has Own Health Ministry, Bisphenol-A Laws

And thanks to NAFTA, soon Americans will, too, Bisphenol-A policies set right there in Ottawa, which polycarbonate gear manufacturers who treat the US and Canada as one market will have to adhere to.

As a couple of Canadian types have pointed out, Health Canada is set to declare BPA to be "toxic," which will trigger a 2-year process of debate, research, and rulemaking that could end in a partial or total ban of the substance in certain human applications.

My favorite quote from the NY Times report, besides, the professor who said, "If I was a fish and there was bisphenol-a in the water, I’d be concerned. If I was a fetus and my mother was using a plastic water bottle, I wouldn’t be bothered." is this:

A spokeswoman for the Canadian Plastics Industry Association referred a request for comment to the American Chemistry Council in Arlington, Va.

Canada first to label bisphenol A as officially dangerous | Would pave way for a federal ban
[globe and mail via dt reader melanie]
Canada Likely to Label Plastic Ingredient ‘Toxic’ [nyt]


You know, we're so used to the screwed up way the world works that we don't think about how stupid it is that the onus is on the government to prove it's harmful in order to ban it, instead of being on the plastics industry to prove it's safe in order to sell it.

It's good to see that some our major Canadian retailers are now pulling BPA productions off their shelves (like The Bay) before the government gets its act togeter. However, it's disheartening that it took them so long to do so when companies like MEC (Canada's answer to REI) did so eons ago.

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