Fight Children's Cancer-- Fight Pollution sign now

This petition is dedicated to Casey Heady, a fifth-grader from Rhinebeck with leukemia, the late Billy Mollica, a Red Hook boy who recently passed away from cancer, and Jacob Wurster, another child here in Dutchess County with cancer.

Enough is enough.

It's time for the Precautionary Principle to be made real here in Dutchess.

"We have learned how to save more lives, thankfully, but more children are still diagnosed with cancer every year. The incidence of cancer in all sites combined among children ages 0-19 increased by 22\% from 13.8/100,000 in 1973 to 16.8 in 2000 and most of this increase occurred in the 1970s and 1980s. Epidemiologic studies have consistently linked higher risks of childhood leukemia and childhood brain and central nervous system cancers with parental and childhood exposure to particular toxic chemicals including solvents, pesticides, petrochemicals, and certain industrial by-products (namely dioxins and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons [PAHs]). Clapp, Howe and Lefevre tell us that between 1950 and 2001 the incidence rate for all types of cancer increased 85\%, using age-adjusted data, which means cancer isn't increasing because people are living longer.
[from Peter Montague's "The Environmental Causes of Cancer"-- quoting Richard Clapp, Genevieve Howe, and Molly Jacobs Lefevre "Environmental and Occupational Causes of Cancer; A Review of Recent Scientific Literature" :]

Dutchess County should also follow the good example of Erie County and Buffalo-- and make sure that our county tax dollars are used only for purchasing healthy products-- not products filled with bioaccumulative toxins (join many from across Dutchess who have already signed on to effort for this here: (resolution submitted years ago to our County Legislature on this).

Dutchess County should delay no longer in respecting common sense and the Precautionary Principle-- and opt in to the state's neighbor notification law for commercial pesticide application-- 75\% of NYS residents now live in counties that have this protection-- Ulster (last year, encouraged by a Daily Freeman editorial), even a Republican-led Suffolk County Legislature many years ago, New York City, Erie, Monroe, Nassau, Rockland, Suffolk, Tompkins, and Westchester counties; see/sign/fwd: .

Dutchess County should delay no longer in making bipartisan Horton/Goldberg well-testing legislation real-- for whenever properties change hands, as has been passed into law in Wappinger, Fishkill, East Fishkill, Rockland and Westchester counties, and New Jersey; see/sign/fwd: ;

Chemicals should be tested for long-term effects on children's health before they are allowed to be put into products-- "Dr. Philip Landrigan of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City works with scientists around the country to understand how kids are affected by exposure to chemicals. 'Of the 3000 high production volume chemicals in use in this country today, only 43\% have been even minimally tested,' he tells PBS' Bill Moyers. 'Only about 10\% have been thoroughly tested to examine their potential effects on childrens health and development.'"

"Major loopholes in federal law prevent the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or any other government agency from approving the safety of cosmetics and body care products before they can be sold. The European Union now bans more than 1,100 chemicals from use in personal care products. In stark contrast, just 10 ingredients are banned from cosmetics in the United States.
Ingredients in personal care products in the U.S.: 10,500 Portion of chemical ingredients in cosmetics that have been assessed for health and safety by the industrys self-policing safety panel: 11\%."

Our county's Health Department website should be much more pro-active educating Dutchess residents on many toxins in environment that are threat to children's health and the health of all of us-- warnings about pesticides, MTBE, phthalates, arsenic in treated wood, Bisphenol A, fluoride, mercury, persistent bioaccumulative toxins, etc. in our environment.

Moreover, if the federal and/or state governments won't move to protect us, Dutchess County itself should move to follow the examples listed below from California and Europe-- and our county government itself should move ahead with county-level legislation to protect our health (this will actually save money for local residents-- as less Medicaid tax dollars will need to be spent on hospital and emergency room visits).

Two years ago even Republican California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law the Safe Cosmetics law there-- making sure that companies have to notify the state when they use chemicals linked to cancer or birth defects (this is the bare minimum of what needs to happen, of course-- such chemicals should be outright banned from use in personal care products).

Phthalates have been banned from children's toys in Europe since 1999-- what's the delay here?

The California State Legislature this year passed a law banning six different types of phthalates from children's toys-- what's the delay here?

Last December the European Parliament decided to finally move ahead and regulate 30,000 toxic chemicals (and move towards banning over a thousand)-- what's the delay here?

Since last July a ban on the sale of electronic products with mercury, cadmium, or lead (products like computer circuit boards or cathode ray tubes) has been in effect in Europe-- why not here?

The Dutchess County Health Department website should also add the following information, updated, from Green Media Toolshed's
[from Toxics Release Inventory 2002 data for Dutchess County]

Top four polluters in Dutchess County:


Top pollutants in Dutchess County:
[DCDOH site should list side effects of below chemicals]

1. NITRATE COMPOUNDS: 823,312 pounds
2. TOLUENE: 16,210 pounds
3. HYDROFLUORIC ACID: 7,561 pounds
4. N-METHYL-2-PYRROLIDONE: 7,424 pounds
5. AMMONIA: 6,816 pounds
6. XYLENE (MIXED ISOMERS): 4,490 pounds
8. ZINC: 3,370 pounds
9. METHYL ETHYL KETONE: 3,215 pounds
10. NITRIC ACID: 3,019 pounds
11. BIS(2-ETHYLHEXYL) PHTHALATE: 2,822 pounds
12. METHANOL: 2,195 pounds
13. SULFURIC ACID: 1,366 pounds
14. ETHYLBENZENE: 1,130 pounds
15. COPPER: 207 pounds
16. LEAD: 129 pounds
17. ETHYLENE GLYCOL: 102 pounds
18. OZONE: 10 pounds


It's time to make the Precautionary Principle real here in our county.

If you agree, sign on to this petition, pass it on, and contact our County Legislature at [email protected]

Joel Tyner
County Legislator
324 Browns Pond Road
Staatsburg, NY 12580
[email protected]
(845) 876-2488

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From\%20&\%20Cancer.htm ...

"A 1987 study by the National Cancer Institute showed that children living in pesticide-treated homes had nearly a 4 times greater risk of developing leukemia (cancer of the blood). If the children lived in homes where pesticide was sprayed on lawns and gardens, the risk of developing leukemia was 6.5 times greater. All the children in the study were 10 years of age or younger. (Dr. John Peters, University of Southern California, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, July 1987.)
[from "Pesticides and Cancer" by Gwen Petremen of the Toxics Information Project]

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From ...

The Natural Resources Defense Council on "Kids and Cancer":

Pesticides: There is scientific evidence for pesticides' role in some childhood cancers. For example, many pesticides that have been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals are still being used. In addition, numerous studies show links between childhood cancer and the use of pesticides in the home or garden, at parents' jobs, and as flea control on pets. And many forms of childhood cancer have been linked to exposure to pesticides in children, their parents or both, including leukemia (the most common childhood cancer), brain tumors, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, Wilms tumor, Ewing's sarcoma and soft tissue sarcoma.

Solvents: Solvents have been linked to brain tumors and leukemia in children. The research has focused mostly on situations in which fathers or mothers are exposed at work. Many experts think that these associations may be due to effects of solvents on sperm or eggs, but others point out that people exposed to solvents on the job come home with residues on their clothes and even in their exhaled breath, which might harm fetuses or children. Solvents, like pesticides, are all around us. They are commonly found in paints, nonwater-based glues, degreasers, varnish strippers and gasoline.

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From ...

[from "No Easy Fix for $25B Problem" by Matt Pacenza Albany Times-Union 4/10/06]

"Greenbush resident Colleen Berrian is convinced MTBE made her neighbors sick. Without prompting, she runs through a list: `A lady a few houses down died of bone cancer. A 17-year-old boy died of a brain tumor. A 4-year-old had a tumor. Another couple on Greenbush Drive both died of cancer. Many pets in the neighborhood have died of cancers. Another boy had leukemia. Up on Bircher Avenue, across 9G, there were a lot of cancers up there. I know a gal who grew up there who said that several people in her family all had brain cancers.' No health study has been done in Greenbush."

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Fact: According to the searchable database still online at Albany Times-Union's "Hidden Poison" report from last April, seventeen towns and both cities here in Dutchess County have been found to have MTBE contamination (note: MTBE is just the tip of the iceberg; there are plenty of other volatile organic chemicals to be worried about); see: .

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Fact: According to a cover article for the Weekly Beat February 2nd: "False Sense of Security" by Cara Patterson, "An inquiry with the DOH [Dutchess County Department of Health] turned up records of MTBE contamination in untreated public water supplies in the towns of Beekman, East Fishkill, La Grange, Pleasant Valley, Stanford, Wappinger, and Washington during 2006. Hyde Park and Amenia have also appeared on lists of water supplies contaminated since 2000." (Note: DCDOH also found serious MTBE contamination in Rhinebeck in 2004 and 2005-- and serious MTBE contamination was also discovered across the town by various boards in Clinton last year as well.)
[see ]

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"In Hyde Park, there have been five gasoline spills over the last 10 years and the MTBE that was in the gasoline has found its way into the water table at the occurrence of the spills. The BP station on Yates Avenue had a spill in 1990. The Hess Station on Route 9 recorded a spill in 1994, and the Citgo Station on Violet Avenue had a spill in 1998. DEC and EPA never told homeowners about the spills until this past year by way of flyers. However, testing for MTBE only began in 1998, years after two spills took place. In fact, a call from the Curcio residence on West Dorsey Lane to the DEC in 1990 remarked that there was a strong petroleum odor coming from the well water. When the specific site was tested, it was found to have levels of MTBE at 100,000 parts per billion. DEC suggests safe levels to be at 10 parts per billion for groundwater. A filter was installed at the residence, but no one else in the neighborhood was informed. Each spill was recorded in the DEC's database, having both the date and the location of the spill on record. DEC claims it has no mechanism to inform the public of every spill case."

[from "Residents Want Solution to MTBE-Contaminated Wells" by Kylie McCarron (Hyde Park Townsman 11/16/00)]

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"The [Dutchess County] Board [of Health] was also surprised to learn that there is no process in place, where when a public well is found to be contaminated, that owners of adjacent private wells are warned of the water contamination. The Board naively assumed public health officials would feel a duty to warn the public about an identified hazard."

[from Millbrook's Dr. William Augerson (of our county's Board of Health) testimony at Jan. 16th public hearing at the Farm and Home Center]

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From ...
[The Environmental Working Group]

Health/Toxics: Children's Health

When it comes to chemical exposure, children aren't just miniature adults. Their developing bodies are vulnerable to toxic harm from small doses received at the wrong time.


Arsenic in Treated Wood
Bisphenol A
Flame Retardants
Pesticides & Organics
Rocket Fuel (Perchlorate)

Bisphenol A: Toxic Plastics Chemical in Canned Food: Independent laboratory tests found a toxic food-can lining ingredient associated with birth defects of the male and female reproductive systems in over half of 97 cans of name-brand fruit, vegetables, soda, and other commonly eaten canned goods.

9.26.07Cosmetics With Banned and Unsafe Ingredients
7.14.05Body Burden: The Pollution in Newborns
8.16.07Fluoride in Southern California Tap Water
9.28.07Farmed Salmon, Pro and Con
9.28.07My turn: Study claims fluoride causes cancer in youth
9.27.07Are Mercury-Containing Vaccines Safe For Children?
9.25.07Investigation Finds More Than 400 Cosmetic Products on U.S. Shelves Unsafe When Used as Directed: Based on Industry Ingredient Assessments
8.23.07EWG Statement on Latest FDA Proposed Sunscreen Safety Standards
8.21.07EWG Statement on Reassignment of Chief of NIH Environmental Institute
12.3.03Probabilistic exposure and risk assessment for children who contact CCA-treated wood on playsets and decks and CCA-containing soil around these structures
8.6.07EWG Letter to Infant Formula Manufacturers
6.20.07EWG Letter to CERHR, Re: Interim Draft Report on Bisphenol A

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From ...
[The Environmental Working Group]

Cosmetics With Banned and Unsafe Ingredients: News Release - Investigation Finds More Than 400 Cosmetic Products on U.S. Shelves Unsafe When Used as Directed: Based on Industry Ingredient Assessments
Nearly 400 Products Contain Ingredients Banned in Other Countries

CONTACT: EWG or EWG Action Fund Public Affairs, (202) 667-6982
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 26, 2007

FDA, Cosmetics Industry Lock Out Consumer, Public Health Groups from Meeting

WASHINGTON As FDA officials and the cosmetics industry prepared to huddle behind closed doors without input from outside groups to discuss regulatory obstacles between countries, Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the results of a new investigation that found literally hundreds of cosmetics sold in the U.S. containing chemicals the industry itself has determined to be unsafe even when used as directed. Many of the products lining the shelves of stores in the U.S. actually included chemicals most other countries have outright banned. In a letter to the head of FDA, EWG protested the absence of public health, consumer and environmental organizations at the meeting scheduled for Thursday of this week in Brussels.

Cosmetics do not have to be approved as safe by the FDA before they are sold. As a result, they too often contain dangerous ingredients banned in Europe and Japan or chemicals deemed unsafe for specific uses by their own industry scientists, said Jane Houlihan, VP for Research at EWG.

Nearly 90 percent of ingredients in personal care products have not been assessed for safety by anyone, so we are not sure what regulatory obstacles the FDA and industry need to minimize, Houlihan added.

"It's an outrage that the FDA would shut consumers out of this important process," said Janet Nudelman, Coordinator of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, "especially since they've set a place for the cosmetics industry at the table."

In a new analysis of the ingredients in more than 23,000 products, EWG discovered that nearly 1 of every 30 products sold in the U.S. fails to meet 1 or more industry or governmental cosmetics safety standards. EWGs investigation also found nearly 400 products sold in the U.S. containing chemicals that are prohibited for use in cosmetics in other countries, and over 400 products containing ingredients the U.S. cosmetic industrys own safety panel has determined to be unsafe when used as directed.

Unlike for drugs and food additives, FDA has no authority to require that cosmetics be tested for safety before they are sold. An industry-funded panel, not a government health agency, reviews the safety of cosmetic ingredients in the U.S. EWG research shows that this largely self-regulated industry routinely fails to adhere to their own safety panels advice and to heed the health warnings inherent in cosmetic safety standards set in other countries.

EWG is a nonprofit research organization based in Washington, DC that uses the power of information to protect human health and the environment. The results of EWGs investigation can be found at, along with a copy of the letter to FDA.

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["Unmasked: 10 Ugly Truths Behind the Myth of Cosmetic Safety"]

Every day we use multiple personal care productsfrom shampoo to deodorant, lotion to make-upthat contain chemical ingredients that are absorbed through the skin, inhaled or ingested. So its not surprising that potentially harmful chemicals have gotten into our bodies, our breast milk and our children. Some of these chemicals are linked to cancer, birth defects, learning disabilities and other health problems that are epidemic in our society. Astonishingly, in the United States, 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women are expected to develop cancer during their lifetimes, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Few ingredients have been assessed for long-term health impacts, but those that haveand are known or suspected to be toxicare still allowed in cosmetics. Some of the most problematic are:

PHTHALATES: These plasticizing chemicals are probable human reproductive or developmental toxins and endocrine disruptors. Two phthalates often used in cosmetics (dibutyl and diethylhexyl) have been banned in the European Union. Found in some nail polishes, fragrances and hair sprays. cals from personal care products because they may cause cancer, birth defects or reproductive problems.

PETROCHEMICALS: These byproducts of crude oil (appearing on labels as petrolatum, mineral oil and paraffin) may contain known or suspected human carcinogens as well as harmful breakdown products or impurities from manufacturing processes (such as 1,4-Dioxane), which are not listed on ingredient labels. Found in some hair relaxers, shampoos, anti-aging creams, mascaras, perfumes, foundations, lipsticks and lip balms.

MERCURY: Often listed as thimerosal on ingredient labels, mercury is a possible human carcinogen, and a human reproductive or developmental toxin. Found in some eye drops, ointments and mascaras.

PLACENTA: Placenta produces progesterone, estrogen and other hormones that can interfere with the bodys normal hormone functions and can lead to serious health problemslike breast cancerwhen used in cosmetics. Sometimes used in hair relaxers, moisturizers and toners.

LEAD ACETATE: This compound of lead is a known human reproductive and developmental toxin. Prohibited from use in cosmetics in the European Union. Found in some hair dyes and cleansers.

Manufacturers say their products are safe. But what do those claims really mean? It may mean that the company has tested the ingredients it usesbut only to determine if the chemicals cause rashes, swelling or other acute reactions. Companies are not required to test the ingredients in their products to determine if they cause long-term, negative health effects, such as cancer or the inability to have a healthy child. Since there is no government standard for safety, companies can say whatever they want about the safety of their products.

The $50 billion U.S. cosmetics industry routinely opposes laws that would protect consumers and the environment. The Cosmetics, Toiletry and Fragrance Association (CTFA) has lobbied against laws that would control pollution at cosmetics manufacturing plants, require recycled content in packaging or add more consumer safety information on labels. The industry says it doesnt need laws because it can voluntarily regulate itself. An industry-funded panel called the Cosmetics Ingredient Review panelnot the FDA or any other government agencyis currently in charge of reviewing the safety of cosmetics.

More than 600 companies have signed the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, a pledge to remove hazardous chemicals and replace them with safer alternatives. Many well-known companies in the natural products industry have signed the Compact. However, none of the cosmetic industry giants have signed... yet. We need your help to convince Avon, Revlon, LOreal, Estee Lauder, Proctor & Gamble and other large corporations to sign the Compact and commit to removing toxic chemicals from their products.

Clean Water Action 262 Washington Street, Suite 301 Boston, MA 02108 617.338.8131
Breast Cancer Fund 1388 Sutter Street, Suite 400 San Francisco, CA 94109 415.346.8223
Alliance for a Healthy Tomorrow Breast Cancer Fund Clean Water Action Commonweal Friends of the Earth Womens Voices for the Earth National Black Environmental Justice Network Environmental Working Group Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition National Environmental Trust Campaign for Safe Cosmetics

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European Parliament OKs world's toughest law on toxic chemicals
30,000 substances to be regulated -- U.S. will be affected
Marla Cone, Los Angeles Times
December 14, 2006

The European Parliament approved on Wednesday the world's most stringent law aimed at protecting people and the environment from thousands of toxic chemicals -- legislation that will have a far-reaching effect on industries and products worldwide, including in the United States.

The new law, which regulates about 30,000 toxic substances, is far more restrictive and comprehensive than existing U.S. regulations. The most hazardous -- an estimated 1,500 -- could be banned or restricted. Included on that list are some compounds used in electronics, furniture, toys, cosmetics and other everyday items.

Environmental activists in the United States were thrilled, saying that the United States has fallen behind in regulating chemicals and predicting that Europe's law will lead to safer products on both sides of the Atlantic.

The European Parliament's vote came after seven years of review and contentious debate. The legislation is adamantly opposed by U.S. industry and the Bush administration, but it is not as strong as some European political parties had advocated.

Called REACH -- Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals -- the legislation is intended to force industries to register chemicals and submit health and safety data, replace the most hazardous ones with safer alternatives, and replace 40 existing European Union rules with a comprehensive program. A new European Chemicals Agency, based in Helsinki, Finland, will become a central regulatory authority.

The law will take effect in June and be phased in over 11 years. It must be approved next week by the European Council, which represents the EU's 25 nations, but that is considered a technicality because it was Parliament's approval that was in question.

The U.S. chemical industry, which is the global leader in chemical production, had battled the proposal for years, calling it costly and bureaucratic.

"This will have a huge impact well beyond the chemical industry," said Steven Russell, senior director of the American Chemistry Council, which represents Dow, Du Pont, ExxonMobil, Procter & Gamble and other companies that produce chemicals, one of the nation's leading exports. "REACH does not limit its provisions to trade in chemicals, but also trade in products, from airplanes to adhesive tape. It applies equally to products made in Europe and products made outside Europe."

Nevertheless, Russell said, "the U.S. chemical industry is going to focus quickly and smartly on getting the job done. Our customers need our products, and we have a strong motivation to continue to supply them."
The cost to European industry has been estimated by the EU at $2 billion to $6 billion over the 11-year period in which the law will be phased in. No estimate for U.S. companies has been calculated, but "this legislation will be incredibly expensive to all parties," Russell said.

Health and safety assessments will be mandatory for chemicals used in volumes exceeding 1 ton annually. The European Commission says there is little existing safety information on 99 percent of the tens of thousands of chemicals put on the market before 1981.

The most hazardous compounds -- carcinogens, reproductive toxins, or those that accumulate in the bodies of people and animals -- could only be used if authorized by the new agency.

Under the United States' 30-year-old Toxic Substances Control Act, the Environmental Protection Agency has little legal authority to ban or restrict chemicals in use before 1976 because it must first prove they pose an unreasonable risk.

"To protect the health of Americans and the competitiveness of U.S. companies, we must now overhaul our own laws on toxic chemicals," said Daryl Ditz of the U.S. environmental group Center for International Environmental Law.

Originally, the proposal mandated that whenever safer substitutes existed for the most dangerous chemicals, they must be used. Instead, under the law as passed, companies must submit plans to replace them. Where no alternative exists, the companies must work to find one.

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