Thursday, January 21, 2010

Election Results, Toxic as the News on PBDEs

The folks at PB Boulangeriebistro must have uncorked cases and cases of champagne for this magnificent new bar, but there was little reason for rejoicing in Wellfleet yesterday. Here are the election results, posted at town hall: Brown, 596; Coakley, 1075; Kennedy, 25. 64% of the resident population cast votes. The Outer Cape proved more Democratic than Cape towns beyond the rotary. That bit will have to do as the good news. Senator-elect Scott Brown, who has been called a “global warming realist,” has expressed skepticism that climate change is caused by humans. The Guardian reports President Obama will probably slip his plan for an “ambitious climate change bill” off the back burner and into the fridge. Yesterday also brought word of a study by the Columbia Center of Children’s Environmental Health at Columbia University to the effect that prenatal exposure to flame retardant compounds is associated with adverse neurodevelopmental effects in young children. The paper concludes, “While additional studies exploring the association between PBDE exposure and developmental effects are underway, the identification of opportunities to reduce exposure to these compounds should be a priority.”


Yesterday Diane Rehm received Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie, authors of a new book called "Slow Death by Rubber Duck." (Hat tip to Janet, who alerted me to the program from work!) Mike Walls of the American Chemical Council was also invited, and he suggested reading online "Facts on BPA", already presented here and dismissed as industry spin.

We know what BPA is and already try to avoid it. PBDE stands for polybrominated diphenyl ether. In the upcoming battle with the chemical industry, we all need to do our best to educate ourselves. I don’t know about you but I find these compound chemical names and their acronyms to be a real challenge. Please read the definition at Wikipedia and get informed here. Suffice it to say PBDEs do appear to be ENDOCRINE DISRUPTERS. ...