Safe Chemical Act of 2011: Good for Business, Revives the Economy

For Immediate Release: 
April 13, 2011

Safe Chemical Act of 2011

Good for Business; Revives the Economy; Business and Investor Communities Welcome Chemical Reform

(Washington DC) The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) announced today that it supports Congress to help rebuild the economy and create a new wave of jobs and innovation through the use of green chemistry and sustainable materials with production away from hazardous chemicals.

Our businesses understand that to compete in the global marketplace, future market gains and financial benefits will best be realized by supporting new legislation that fundamentally reforms the nation’s chemical regulations—the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976, also known as TSCA,” explains ASBC co-founder David Levine.

The ASBC welcomed the introduction today of the Safe Chemicals Act of 2011 by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), which provides an opportunity for the long overdue modernization of this country's obsolete chemical safety system.

ASBC Businesses Support Economic Benefits from:

  • Cutting the costs of hazardous waste storage and disposal
  • Improving worker protection, health care costs, and future liabilities
  • Market trends transforming supply chains that result in better business

Our businesses understand that consumers are demanding safer products,” according to Levine. ASBC member organizations represent more than 70,000 businesses, plus more than 150,000 individual business leaders.

"Toxic chemical exposures are a multi-billion dollar drag on the U.S. economy, resulting in added health care costs and lost productivity. Not only do they contribute to human suffering in the form of cancer, reproductive health problems, asthma, developmental disabilities, and other significant illnesses, but we believe they negatively weigh on corporate performance and reduce investor returns." — Matthew Patsky, CEO of Trillium Asset Management.

Trillium represents a growing investor community supporting chemical policy reform. Earlier this year Investor Environmental Health Network (IEHN) and the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) coordinated an investor letter, signed by 51 organizations managing more than $35 billion in assets, endorsing the Safe Chemicals Act.

I saw Lake Erie die and then observed how the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 helped bring it back to life,” says ASBC member Barry Cik, founder and owner, Naturepedic. “Our company was created to help stop the rampant misuse of chemicals. Naturepedic is determined to give babies and their families an alternative free of questionable chemicals. There are very few, if any, responsibilities that we have that are more important than providing a safe environment for our children. Naturepedic is asking Congress and the American public to level the playing field for businesses and make sure that all babies and children are provided with safe and healthy products free of questionable chemicals by passing this needed legislation.

I believe more fervently now than I did 6 years ago that we have a right to know what’s “in” the products we buy—and TSCA reform is a vital first step,” says ASBC member Sarah Beatty, the founder of Green Depot. As a mother, I believe corporations and government share in the responsibility to safeguard the healthy development of all Americans, especially our next generation. As a businessperson, I believe emerging “green” technologies, materials, and green chemistry not only make sense, they will be a key to America’s reinvention and competitive growth. The time for this reform is now.

“Consumer awareness of the interaction between toxic chemical exposure and health is growing. Consumers should be able to trust that the products they buy are safe. TSCA reform is essential for protecting the health of consumers, workers, and children through a smarter, safer, and preventative approach to chemical use in consumer products and in the workplace” says Gary Hirshberg, President and "CE-Yo" of Stonyfield Farm, Inc.

Thousands of businesses are leading the necessary innovation away from hazardous chemicals and toward safer chemicals use,” says Levine.

Fundamental Facts for TSCA Reform and Business

A growing number of business owners, executives, professionals, and investors are urging a TSCA reform bill that provides the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the authority to:

  • Require chemical manufacturers to develop and submit hazard, use, and exposure data on chemicals in commerce, and allow EPA to make such data readily available to the public.
  • Take immediate action to reduce the use of persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic (PBT) chemicals and other chemicals of very high concern.
  • Clearly identify chemicals of high and low concern to human and environmental health based on robust information.
  • Require greater disclosure of chemicals of high concern in products.
  •  Promote and support transition to safer alternatives

Available for Interviews

David Levine, co-founder, American Sustainable Business Council

Matthew Patsky, CEO of Trillium Asset Management,

Barry Cik, founder and owner, Naturepedic,

Gary Hirshberg, President and "CE-Yo" of Stonyfield Farm, Inc.,

Sarah Beatty, Founder, Green Depot

Resources

ASBC has issued a call for additional business leaders to voice their concerns in the Business Leaders sign-on letter for the reform of the Toxic Substances Control Act

Investors sign-on letter

For more information on the business case, see: The Business Case for Comprehensive TSCA Reform

 

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