lunes, 28 de abril de 2008

Debate over safety of chemical in plastic bottle

Ingestion of Bisphenol A, used to make polycarbonate plastic, is linked to child diseases

Canada is moving to get rid of products with a chemical common in plastic baby bottles, and the United States is expressing concern over its safety, however the risks are still disputed.
Canada's Health Minister Tony Clement said he would bring in rules to outlaw plastic polycarbonate baby bottles, perhaps within the next year.
These bottles are made with bisphenol A, which is also used in food and water containers.
Mr Clement said bisphenol A could hinder child development and cited a study which he said showed that overexposure at an early age could cause behavioral and neurological symptoms later in life.
Canada would be the first country to ban the sale and import of the items.
The National Toxicology Program, part of the US government's National Institutes of Health, issued a draft report expressing concern that bisphenol A could cause neural and behavioral problems in foetuses, infants and children.
Relying on the results of animal studies, it expressed concern about possible links between exposure to the chemical and early puberty and prostate and breast cancer. And Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, announced on Thursday it plans to offer more products free of bisphenol A, and intends to stop selling baby bottles made with the chemical early next year.
Risk disputed: Whether bisphenol A poses genuine health risks in people remains a matter of debate, with industry groups defending its safety and environmental activists saying studies involving animals show otherwise.
Bisphenol A is used to make polycarbonate plastic, a clear shatter-resistant material in products ranging from plastic baby bottles and water bottles to sports safety equipment and medical devices.
It also is used to make durable epoxy resins used as the coating in most food and beverage cans.
People can eat or drink the chemical when it leaches out of the plastic into liquid such as baby formula, water or food inside the container.
Michael Schade of the US environmental group Center for Health, Environment and Justice said governments and major retailers are recognising that the chemical is extremely toxic at low levels of exposure. However Carl Winter, director of the Food Safety Program at the University of California-Davis, says there is still no strong evidence supporting significant impacts on human health for bisphenol A.


Aporte: Guillermo Figueroa

No hay comentarios.: