As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we depend almost entirely on donations from people like you.
We really need your help to continue this work! Please consider making a donation.
Subscribe here and join over 13,000 subscribers to our free weekly newsletter

Toxic Chemicals News Articles

Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on the toxic chemicals that we're exposed to in our food, household products, environment, and more. If any link fails to function, a paywall blocks full access, or the article is no longer available, try these digital tools.

For further exploration, delve into our comprehensive Health and Food Corruption Information Center.

Explore our comprehensive news index on a wide variety of fascinating topics.
Explore the top 20 most revealing news media articles we've summarized.
Check out 10 useful approaches for making sense of the media landscape.

Sort articles by: Article Date | Date Posted on WantToKnow.info | Importance


Monsanto and the Merchants of Poison
2022-12-23, CounterPunch
https://www.counterpunch.org/2022/12/23/monsanto-and-the-merchants-of-poison/

Last week, the report Merchants of Poison: How Monsanto Sold the World on a Toxic Pesticide was published by authors Stacy Malkan, Kendra Klein and Anna Lappé. [In 2012], pesticide and processed food companies spent $45 million to defeat a ballot initiative to label GMOs (genetically modified foods) in California. This campaign was led by Monsanto, one of the planet’s largest producers of GMOs. Monsanto created a PR storm through the mouths of so-called third-party “experts” from across the fields of academia and science. It was later revealed that these allegedly neutral voices were closely tied to Monsanto. The World Health Organization (WHO) in 2015 concluded that glyphosate—the chemical contained within herbicides that most GMO crops have been engineered to resist—is likely a human carcinogen. Thousands sued Monsanto claiming that their exposure of Monsanto’s glyphosate-based product, Roundup, caused their cancers. Monsanto employees ghostwrote scientific papers on the safety of glyphosate and strategized how to discredit journalists and scientists raising concerns about the pesticide. Major universities, including University of California Davis and University of Florida, played a significant role in legitimizing and amplifying pesticide industry product-defense efforts. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Cornell University, and the American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) ... also provided essential aid and cover for pesticide industry propaganda.

Note: A 2019 study found that glyphosate increases cancer risk by 41%. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on GMOs and science corruption from reliable major media sources.


EWG finds little-known toxic chemical in four out of five people tested
2024-02-15, Environmental Working Group
https://www.ewg.org/news-insights/news/2024/02/ewg-finds-little-known-toxic-c...

A new EWG peer-reviewed study has found chlormequat, a little-known pesticide, in four out of five, or 80 percent, of people tested. The groundbreaking analysis of chlormequat in the bodies of people in the U.S. rings alarm bells, because the chemical is linked to reproductive and developmental problems in animal studies, suggesting the potential for similar harm to humans. EWG’s research, published February 15 in the Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology, tested for the presence of chlormequat in urine collected from 96 people between 2017 and 2023. The chemical was found in the urine of 77 of them. We detected the chemical in 92 percent of oat-based foods purchased in May 2023, including Quaker Oats and Cheerios. The fact that so many people are exposed raises concerns about its potential impact on public health, since animal studies link chlormequat to reduced fertility, harm to the reproductive system and altered fetal growth. Environmental Protection Agency regulations allow the chemical to be used on ornamental plants only – not food crops – grown in the U.S. But its use is permitted on imported oats and other foods sold here. Many oats and oat products consumed in the U.S. come from Canada. Chlormequat was not allowed on oats sold in the U.S. before 2018, when the Trump EPA gave first-time approval for some amount of the chemical on imported oats. The same administration in 2020 increased the allowable level.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Common pesticides in food reducing sperm count worldwide, study says
2023-11-15, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2023/11/15/health/sperm-damage-pesticides-wellness/index....

Pesticides used in our homes, gardens and lawns and sprayed on foods we eat are contributing to a dramatic decline in sperm count among men worldwide, according to a new analysis of studies over the last 50 years. “Over the course of 50 years, sperm concentration has fallen about 50% around the world,” said senior study author Melissa Perry. “While there are likely many more contributing causes, our study demonstrates a strong association between two common insecticides —organophosphates and N-methyl carbamates — and the decline of sperm concentration.” Organophosphates are the main components of nerve gas, herbicides, pesticides and insecticides and are also used to create plastics and solvents. They are widely used in agriculture on the crops we eat. We use them in structural applications within homes and buildings. N-methyl carbamates are structurally and operationally similar to organophosphates, killing insects by damaging their brains and nervous systems. The study, published ... in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, examined 25 studies around the world on the two chemicals. Those studies looked at 42 different levels of impact among 1,774 men in 21 different study populations. Men who were more highly exposed to the pesticides, such as those who work in agriculture, had significantly less sperm concentration than men who had the least exposure to organophosphates and N-methyl carbamates, the study found.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Court tosses EPA ban on pesticide linked to brain damage in kids
2023-11-02, The Hill
https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/4291117-court-tosses-epa-ban-pe...

A federal appeals court on Thursday is tossing the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ban on a pesticide that has been linked to brain damage in children. The decision from the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals to send the rule back to the agency does not preclude the agency from reinstating the ban in the future. But it said the EPA needs to give greater consideration to whether there are cases where the pesticide, called chlorpyrifos, could be used safely. Chlorpyrifos has been used as an insecticide, protecting crops like soybeans, broccoli, cauliflower and fruit trees. The EPA banned chlorpyrifos for use in growing food in 2021. That came after a prior court ruling gave the agency just 60 days to either find a safe use for chlorpyrifos or ban it outright. The appeals court determined that this deadline contributed to a rushed decision from EPA that was ultimately “arbitrary and capricious.” The ruling comes from Judges Lavenski Smith, Raymond Gruender and David Stras, two of whom were appointed by former President George W. Bush and one of whom was appointed by former President Trump. The chlorpyrifos issue has ping-ponged between administrations. The Obama administration had proposed to ban its use on food, but the Trump administration reversed course and had proposed to allow some uses of the chemical. 

Note: Did you know that chlorpyrifos was originally developed by Nazis during World War II for use as a nerve gas? Read more about the history and politics of chlorpyrifos, and how U.S. regulators relied on falsified data to allow its use for years. See other concise news articles we've summarized about the harms of chlorpyrifos.


Nearly 40% of conventional baby food contains toxic pesticides, US study finds
2023-11-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/nov/23/baby-food-pesticides-study

Nearly 40% of conventional baby food products analyzed in a new US study were found to contain toxic pesticides, while none of the organic products sampled in the survey contained the chemicals. The research, conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) non-profit, looked at 73 products and found at least one pesticide in 22 of them. Many products showed more than one pesticide, and the substances present a dangerous health threat. “Babies and young children are particularly vulnerable to the health risks posed by pesticides in food,” said Sydney Evans, a senior science analyst at EWG. The study looked at products from Beech-Nut, Gerber and Parent’s Choice, though it did not specifically identify which of the companies’ products contained pesticide residue. Among pesticides it detected were acetamiprid, a neonicotinoid insecticide that harms bees and humans, and captan, which is linked to cancer. Fludioxonil, a product commonly used on fruits, vegetables and cereals, was found in five products and is thought to harm fetal development, cause changes in immune system cells and disrupt hormones. Apple-based products were the most likely to contain high levels of pesticide residue, and blueberries, pears and strawberries are also among produce that commonly hold high levels of the chemicals. The best way to avoid pesticides is to buy organic baby food products, which are subjected to much stricter regulations.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Food additive or carcinogen? The growing list of chemicals banned by EU but used in US
2022-06-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/jun/23/titanium-dioxide-banned-c...

There’s a hidden ingredient used as a whitener in an array of foods. It’s called titanium dioxide, and while commonly used in the US, it’s being banned in the EU as a possible carcinogen. The additive, also known as E171, joins a host of other chemicals that are banned in foods in the European Union but allowed in the US. These include Azodicarbonamide, a whitening agent found in food such as breads, bagels, pizza, and pastries in the US, which has been banned in the EU for more than a decade. The additive has been linked to asthma and respiratory issues in exposed workers and, when baked, to cancer in mice studies. The Food and Drug Administration classifies these food chemicals, and many others prohibited by the EU, as “generally recognized as safe”. Chemical safety processes in the EU and US work in starkly different ways. Where European policy tends to take a precautionary approach – trying to prevent harm before it happens – the US is usually more reactive. And while the EU has consistently updated its methods and processes for evaluating new chemicals, some experts say the US system, set up more than half a century ago, needs updating. In the case of additives like titanium dioxide, manufacturers petition the FDA for its approval by submitting evidence that the substance is safe for its intended use. The FDA evaluates the application, and will authorize the additive if it concludes the data provided demonstrates that the substance is safe to use.

Note: Unlike other countries, the U.S. is known to raise objections to the regulation of toxic chemicals in our food, with its regulatory agencies having deep financial ties to powerful food and agrichemical industries. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Map: Does your drinking water contain ‘forever chemicals’?
2023-08-05, The Hill
https://thehill.com/homenews/nexstar_media_wire/4133806-map-does-your-drinkin...

So-called “forever chemicals” have been found in 45% of the nation’s tap water, according to a recent government study, but is your tap water affected? If you’re wondering whether or not your tap water might contain synthetic chemicals known as PFAS, nonprofit Environmental Working Group created an interactive map using official records and data from public drinking water systems to show where forever chemicals were found to be above and below the advised maximum concentration level, 4 parts per trillion (PPT). EWG notes that while researchers used the highest quality data available, contamination levels are based on a single point in time and may not reflect changes to the water system or treatment efforts. PFAS is an umbrella term for thousands of chemicals that are used to make nonstick pans, food packaging, fire-fighting foams, to-go boxes, furniture, rugs, clothing and more. The chemicals are so ubiquitous it would be nearly impossible for most Americans to rid their home of them. The chemicals are both extremely common and potentially dangerous. Described as “forever chemicals” because they don’t degrade naturally in the environment, PFAS have been linked to a variety of health problems, including liver and immune-system damage. Studies of lab animals have found potential links between PFAS chemicals and some cancers, including kidney and testicular, plus issues such as high blood pressure and low birth weight.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


Glyphosate Linked to Severe Depression and Cognitive Decline in U.S. Adults
2023-08-29, The Defender
https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/glyphosate-depression-cognitive-d...

A new peer-reviewed study released by a group of scientists in Taiwan has revealed an astonishingly strong link between severe depression, cognitive decline and exposure to the world’s most used herbicide, glyphosate. The study was fully published on Aug. 22 in the highly respected Elsevier Journal, Environmental Research. It was met with silence by the manufacturers of glyphosate-based herbicides such as Bayer/Monsanto, who produce the infamous weedkiller Roundup. The study authors stated that they: “Conducted analyses on existing data collected from 1532 adults of the 2013–2014 U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) to explore the possible relationship between glyphosate exposure and cognitive function, depressive symptoms, disability, and neurological medical conditions.” The proportion of individuals with detectable levels of glyphosate was 80.4%. The scientists concluded: “Our study provides important evidence of an association between urinary glyphosate levels and adverse neurological outcomes in a representative cohort of U.S. adult population. “Specifically, we observed lower cognitive function scores, greater odds of severe depressive symptoms, and increased risk of serious hearing difficulty in individuals with higher glyphosate exposure.” Some other recent independent studies ... suggest that both glyphosate alone and glyphosate-based herbicides such as Roundup are neurotoxins.

Note: A 2019 study found that glyphosate increases cancer risk by 41%. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


Donald Rumsfeld and the Strange History of Aspartame
2021-01-06, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/donald-rumsfeld-and-the-s_b_805581

The chemical additive aspartame is very potentially a cancer and brain tumor-causing substance that has no place in our food. The reasons and means by which [Donald] Rumsfeld helped get it approved are nefarious at best, criminal at worst. Dr. John Olney, who founded the field of neuroscience called excitotoxicity, attempted to stop the approval of aspartame with Attorney James Turner back in 1996. The FDA’s own toxicologist, Dr. Adrian Gross told Congress that without a shadow of a doubt, aspartame can cause brain tumors and brain cancer. According to the top doctors and researchers on this issue, aspartame causes headache, memory loss, seizures, vision loss, coma and cancer. It worsens or mimics the symptoms of such diseases and conditions as fibromyalgia, MS, lupus, ADD, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, chronic fatigue and depression. In 1985, Monsanto purchased G.D. Searle, the chemical company that held the patent to aspartame, the active ingredient in NutraSweet. Ronald Reagan was sworn in as president January 21, 1981. Rumsfeld, while still CEO at Searle, was part of Reagan’s transition team. This team hand-picked Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes, Jr., to be the new FDA commissioner. One of Hayes’ first official acts as FDA chief was to approve the use of aspartame as an artificial sweetener in dry goods on July 18, 1981. When Searle was absorbed by Monsanto in 1985, Donald Rumsfeld reportedly received a $12 million bonus, pretty big money in those days.

Note: Donald Rumsfeld also made millions on bird flu drugs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the food system from reliable major media sources.


Why Gen X is getting cancer more often than their parents’ generation
2024-06-10, New York Post
https://nypost.com/2024/06/10/lifestyle/why-gen-x-is-getting-cancer-more-ofte...

Bummer news for Gen X: A new study finds that the forgotten generation is being diagnosed with more cancer than their parents’ and grandparents’ generations. “Our results speak to the rate of incidence per 100,000 people,” the researchers [said]. “Gen X is experiencing more cancer than their parents. They are outpacing both baby boomers and the Silent Generation.” The researchers analyzed the number of newly diagnosed cancer cases among Gen X (born between 1965 and 1980), baby boomers (1946-1964), and the Silent Generation (1928-1945). The study ... was published Monday in JAMA Network Open. The researchers noted that public health initiatives have led to “substantial declines” in smoking. “However, other suspected carcinogenic exposures are increasing,” the researchers reported. They said it seems likely that some of the growth is attributable to rising obesity rates and increasingly sedentary lifestyles. In their study of 3.8 million cancer patients, researchers found there have been declines in lung and cervical cancers among Gen X women, but also “significant increases” in thyroid, kidney, rectal, endometrial, colon, pancreatic and ovarian cancers, non-Hodgkin lymphoma and leukemia. Among Gen X men, declines in non-Hodgkin lymphoma and lung, liver and gallbladder cancers have been offset by gains in thyroid, kidney, rectal, colon and prostate cancers and leukemia.

Note: This is a critically important issue that can bring people together across our polarized divides. Why is this not being thoroughly investigated? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and toxic chemicals from reliable major media sources.


It’s time to ban paraquat
2024-02-13, Environmental Working Group
https://www.ewg.org/news-insights/news/2024/02/its-time-ban-paraquat

The Environmental Protection Agency must ban the toxic weedkiller paraquat – a step more than 60 other countries have taken because of its threats to human health. Paraquat has been linked to Parkinson’s disease, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, childhood leukemia and more. While the EPA says paraquat is too toxic for use on U.S. golf courses, it still allows use of the herbicide on farms. This threatens the health of the people who apply it, other farmworkers and those who live or work near crop fields where it’s used. More than 10 million pounds of paraquat were sprayed in 2018 alone, twice as much as has been sprayed since 2014. While much of the paraquat applied winds up in the soil for years, the chemical can also drift through the air or linger in dust. Syngenta makes paraquat in China and the United Kingdom. The Swiss-based company, which was acquired by a Chinese state-owned chemical conglomerate, has long understood the chemical’s health risks. But it spent decades hiding this knowledge from the public and the EPA. Ironically, Chinese, U.K. and Swiss farmers are prohibited by their respective governments from using paraquat due to potential health risks from exposure. But the weedkiller isn’t prohibited in the U.S. Ingesting even tiny amounts of paraquat can be lethal. Recently, findings from researchers at UCLA show paraquat sprayed within 500 meters ... of where people lived and worked could more than double a person’s odds of developing Parkinson’s.

Note: Read more about the dangers of paraquat. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


Toxicologists Find 829 Chemicals in Everyday Items May Cause Breast Cancer
2024-01-10, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/toxicologists-chemicals-hormones-breast-cancer-1859190

Common consumer products may contain hundreds of chemicals that could increase our risk of developing breast cancer, scientists have warned. While some chemicals are known to directly cause cancer, many others indirectly promote the cancer by increasing our susceptibility to the establishment and growth of certain tumors. Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast tissue grow out of control. Among the many risk factors associated with this disease is over-exposure to estrogen, progesterone and hormonal disruption. And it's not just hormonal contraception that can influence our body's hormone levels; numerous synthetic chemicals have been shown to disrupt our hormones, with potential impacts on our risk of developing various diseases. "Breast cancer is a hormonal disease, so the fact that so many chemicals can alter estrogen and progesterone is concerning," Jennifer Kay, a research scientist at Silent Spring Institute, said. In a new study, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, Kay and colleagues searched through multiple international and U.S. government databases to identify chemicals that had been found to cause mammary tumors in animals. In total, the team identified 921 chemicals that could potentially promote the development of breast cancer, 90 percent—or 829—of which are commonly included in consumer products, food, drinks, pesticides, medications and workplaces.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


Reducing pesticides in food: Major food manufacturers earn an F grade
2023-11-08, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2023/11/08/health/pesticides-food-report-wellness/index.html

Seventeen major food manufacturers earned an average grade of F for their lack of progress in reducing pesticides in the products they sell, according to a new analysis by As You Sow, a nonprofit specializing in shareholder advocacy. “It’s disheartening to see so many bad grades across the board for these major food production companies,” said Jane Houlihan, research director for Healthy Babies, Bright Futures. “Studies find the highest amounts of pesticides in some of the most popular foods children eat — berries and apples, for example,” said Houlihan. “Pesticides are also found in breast milk and umbilical cord blood, meaning that exposures start before birth and continue through infancy and beyond.” Long-term exposure to pesticides has been linked to cancer, asthma, anxiety, Parkinson’s disease, depression, and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, according to the report. Kale, collard and mustard greens contained the largest number of pesticides — 103 types — while nearly 90% of blueberry and green bean samples had concerning findings, according to the analysis. Green bean samples contained extremely high levels of acephate, an insecticide banned for use in the vegetable in 2011. Blueberry samples contained acephate, phosmet and malathion — organophosphates which interfere with the normal function of the nervous system. What can consumers do? Choosing organic foods is a surefire way to reduce pesticide exposure.

Note: Read the complete study, titled, "Pesticides in the Pantry: Transparency & Risk in Food Supply Chains." A groundbreaking study found that eating a completely organic diet (even just for a week) can dramatically reduce the presence of pesticide levels in our bodies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


In our blood: how the US allowed toxic chemicals to seep into our lives
2023-09-13, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/sep/13/us-environmental-protecti...

For decades, it was the secret behind the magic show of homemaking across the US. Applied to a pan, it could keep a fried egg from sticking to the surface. Perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, was ... seeping into the blood and organs of hundreds of millions of people who used products containing the chemical. PFOA is just one of dozens of modern-day chemicals that are found in the bodies of the majority of Americans. Research has also shown that more Americans are facing a growing number of ailments and disorders, from autoimmune disease to developmental disorders such as autism and some cancers. Scientists are increasingly concerned these two truths are linked. Scientists have accumulated enough data to conclude with confidence that humans face significant health risks from exposure to common commercial chemicals, and that regulations designed to protect them are failing. Due to flaws in federal regulation, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is perennially playing catch up. The majority of the 86,000 consumer chemicals registered with the agency have never received vigorous toxicity testing. Kyla Bennett, a former EPA employee [said] that at recent rates of review, it would take thousands of years to assess all 86,000 chemicals currently approved for use. EPA staff ... say the agency’s chemical programs remain understaffed, overwhelmed and burdened by still-ineffective regulations and a persistent culture that enables the chemical industry instead of counterbalancing it.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and health issues from reliable major media sources.


Why did the National Honey Board hire a PR firm that works for the pesticide industry?
2023-08-08, U.S. Right to Know
https://usrtk.org/pesticides/national-honey-board-porter-novelli/

In 2016, the American honey industry faced a crisis: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had found high levels of glyphosate, an herbicide linked to cancer, in honey samples from Iowa. The National Honey Board (NHB), a honey industry-funded agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, did what many businesses under fire have done: They hired a crisis management public relations firm, in this case to downplay the risks of glyphosate in honey. The PR firm, Porter Novelli, later worked with the NHB to deflect concerns about honey containing neonicotinoids. The insect-killing chemicals are tied to the collapse of bee colonies. At the same time, Porter Novelli was working for Bayer, a leading manufacturer of glyphosate and neonicotinoids. The PR firm’s work for Bayer included promoting the use of neonicotinoids and opposing regulations that would safeguard honey bees. CropLife America, the pesticide industry lobby group, has also hired Porter Novelli’s subsidiary, Paradigm Communications, to “lead the effort to shift how pesticide products were portrayed in search engine results,” according to the Intercept. Search terms compiled by CropLife America staff included “neonicotinoid,” “pollinators,” and “neonics.” As other countries responded to the science by banning neonics, in the U.S., “industry dug in, seeking not only to discredit the research but to cast pesticide companies as a solution to the problem." Studies show the insecticides are toxic to the brain and nervous system [of humans].

Note: According to the CDC, about half the U.S. population is exposed to at least one neonic on a regular basis, with children ages 3-5 years old having the highest levels. Merchants of Poison: How Monsanto Sold the World on a Toxic Pesticide is a recent and comprehensive analysis of documents released in litigation against Monsanto that expose years of pesticide industry disinformation. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption.


These Chemicals Disrupt the Sexual Development of Children - And They're Everywhere
2021-12-07, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2021/12/07/epa-dinp-phthalates-child-sexual-developm...

Laurie Valeriano first heard about DINP decades ago. “I started to worry about the chemicals that come out of all these plastics,” she said. DINP, one of a group of chemicals called phthalates that makes plastic more pliable, was one of them. It was already clear that DINP could cause cancer and interfere with hormonal functioning. In February 2000, Valeriano and her employer, the Washington Toxics Coalition, asked the Environmental Protection Agency to add DINP to the list of chemicals it monitors through a nationwide program called the Toxics Release Inventory. Seven months later ... the EPA announced that it planned to grant the group’s request and issued a proposed rule that would add DINP to the toxics inventory. Yet more than 20 years later, the EPA has yet to make good on its promise to add DINP to the list of chemicals. It never finalized the rule. Companies have continued to churn out DINP ... in astounding amounts without disclosing how much individual plants make and emit. In addition to the cancer and hormone disruption that sparked Valeriano’s claim 21 years ago, we now know more about how DINP affects the sexual development of children. It decreases sperm motility, increases malformations of the testes and other organs, and makes boys ... more likely to be infertile later in life. In fact, the entire group of phthalates — an estimated half-billion pounds of which are made and used in the U.S. each year — seem to cause a similar constellation of health problems.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


Toxic plastic chemicals number in the thousands, most are unregulated, report finds
2024-03-14, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2024/03/14/health/toxic-unregulated-chemicals-report-well...

For the first time, researchers have pulled together scientific and regulatory data to develop a database of all known chemicals used in plastic production. It’s a staggering number: 16,000 plastic chemicals, with at least 4,200 of those considered to be “highly hazardous” to human health and the environment, according to the authors. “Only 980 of those highly hazardous chemicals have been regulated by agencies around the world, leaving us with 3,600 chemicals that are unregulated — and these are only the known chemicals,” said Martin Wagner, first author and project lead of the PlastChem Report. The ... report outlines a systematic approach to identify and prioritize chemicals of concern that can be used by agencies and regulators around the world, including those attending the April meeting of the International Negotiating Committee on Plastic Pollution. The committee is part of the United Nations Environment Programme, which has committed to developing a Global Plastics Treaty between 175 nations by the end of 2024. “The most important criterion we used is toxicity,” Wagner said. “Many of these chemicals are known to be very toxic for human health or the environment. They are carcinogenic or mutagenic or toxic to reproduction. Some have organ-specific toxicity, typically the liver, as that is where many of the chemicals are absorbed from circulation.” The report [also] found that detailed hazard information is missing for more than 10,000 of the 16,000 chemicals.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on toxic chemicals and corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


US court bans three weedkillers and finds EPA broke law in approval process
2024-02-07, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2024/feb/07/us-weedkiller-ban-dicamba...

A US court this week banned three weedkillers widely used in American agriculture, finding that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) broke the law in allowing them to be on the market. The ruling is specific to three dicamba-based weedkillers manufactured by Bayer, BASF and Syngenta, which have been blamed for millions of acres of crop damage and harm to endangered species and natural areas across the midwest and south. Discovery documents turned up in the litigation showed the companies knew that their dicamba weedkillers would probably lead to off-target crop damage. This is the second time a federal court has banned these weedkillers since they were introduced for the 2017 growing season. In 2020, the ninth circuit court of appeals issued its own ban, but months later the Trump administration reapproved the weedkilling products. But a federal judge in Arizona ruled on Monday that the EPA made a crucial error in reapproving dicamba, finding the agency did not post it for public notice and comment as required by law. US district judge David Bury wrote ... that it was a “very serious” violation and that if EPA had done a full analysis, it probably would not have made the same decision. Bury wrote that the EPA did not allow many people who are deeply affected by the weedkiller – including specialty farmers, conservation groups and more – to comment. “The evidence has shown that dicamba cannot be used without causing massive and unprecedented harm to farms as well as endangering plants and pollinators,” said George Kimbrell [with] the Center for Food Safety, which litigated the case.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Common Chemical Strongly Linked to Parkinson's
2023-05-23, Smithsonian Magazine
https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/common-chemical-strongly-linked-to-...

A study of military veterans has shown the strongest evidence yet that the widespread chemical trichloroethylene (TCE)–used in spot removers, office products and dry-cleaning–is linked to Parkinson's disease. The research focused on service members who were stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina between 1975 and 1985, when levels of TCE in the base's water reached 70 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency's limit. After accounting for demographic factors, Camp Lejeune veterans were 70 percent more likely to develop the movement disorder than service members stationed at Camp Pendleton in California, where the water was uncontaminated. The large study, published last week in the journal JAMA Neurology, adds to a handful of smaller, earlier papers that found a link between TCE and Parkinson's. TCE, which can be in liquid or vapor form, has been commonly used since the 1920s, including as an inhaled surgical anesthetic and in several cleaning products. Today, it's primarily used in making refrigerants and degreasing metal equipment. The chemical breaks down slowly and can be detected in the air, water and soil. It's also found in one-third of U.S. drinking water. The Camp Lejeune drinking water was contaminated with TCE and other chemicals from 1953 to 1987, per the study, due to leakage from underground storage tanks, industrial spills, waste disposal sites and a dry-cleaning business.

Note: Internal corporate documents reveal how global chemical giant Syngenta secretly influenced scientific research regarding links between its top-selling weedkiller and Parkinson's disease. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


How microplastics are infiltrating the food you eat
2023-01-03, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20230103-how-plastic-is-getting-into-our-food

Microplastics have infiltrated every part of the planet. One study estimated that there are around 24.4 trillion fragments of microplastics in the upper regions of the world's oceans. But they aren't just ubiquitous in water – they are spread widely in soils on land too and can even end up in the food we eat. Unwittingly, we may be consuming tiny fragments of plastic with almost every bite we take. In 2022, analysis by the Environmental Working Group, an environmental non-profit, found that sewage sludge has contaminated almost 20 million acres (80,937sq km) of US cropland with per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), often called "forever chemicals", which are commonly found in plastic products and do not break down under normal environmental conditions. Sludge is commonly used as organic fertiliser in the US and Europe. Due to this practice ... between 31,000 and 42,000 tonnes of microplastics, or 86 trillion to 710 trillion microplastic particles, contaminate European farmland each year. Plastic particles can also contaminate food crops directly. A 2020 study found microplastics and nanoplastics in fruit and vegetables sold by supermarkets and in produce sold by local sellers. Crops absorb nanoplastic particles from surrounding water and soil through tiny cracks in their roots. Chemicals found in plastic have been linked to cancer, heart disease and poor fetal development. High levels of ingested microplastics may also cause cell damage which could lead to inflammation and allergic reactions.

Note: There seems to be no part of the planet that is unaffected by the pervasiveness of microplastics, from being found in human veins, human lungs, flying insects, and in 90% of table salt, to heavily polluting our skies and now spiraling around the globe through Earth’s atmosphere. Read more on simple ways that you can reduce microplastic pollution and consumption in your life, and support the many organizations making a meaningful difference to address this issue.


Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.