EPA Top Ten Toxic Chemicals

Chemist hands in latex gloves holding laboratory glassware with liquids on light grey background

Earlier this week, the Environmental Protection Agency released the list of the first 10 chemicals to be evaluated under the new guidelines of the recently revised Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Check out the EPA website for the list. The ten chemicals were drawn from EPA’s 2014 TSCA Work Plan, a list of 90 chemicals selected based on their potential for high hazard and exposure.

Certainly, we’re thrilled that these chemicals are finally coming under closer scrutiny. But as Scott Faber, Environment’s Working Group’s senior vice president for government affairs, says in the EWG’s statement on the initial list, “Chemicals that are so dangerous that they have been placed on the EPA’s top 10 list have no place being on the market.”

And, as we pointed out when the new law passed, the pace of evaluating the chemicals (a process that can stretch to five years and is only required to consider 20 chemicals at a time) is achingly slow, especially when compared to the thousands of chemicals in use every day in thousands of products. Our advice? Yet again, we urge consumers and manufacturers to lead the way in not using these chemicals. As the EWG’s Faber puts it, “Manufacturers should act now to replace these chemicals with safer alternatives.”


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