It’s a good day to be Canadian. Canada will classify bisphenol-A (BPA) as toxic, making history as the first country to take such a definitive stance on the endocrine disrupting chemical. Environment Canada has now confirmed that the country is in the process of adding BPA to it’s list of toxic substances. BPA has been banned in baby bottles since 2008 in Canada and even though a “toxic” label was proposed at the time, the issue has been heavily debated (widely by the American Chemistry Council) until now. Coincidentally, statistics were released just last week showing that 91 percent of Canadians had BPA in their urine and the highest concentrations were in children. The Environmental Working Group says the chemical contaminates nearly 93 percent of the US population.
We hope the US follows suit in labeling BPA as toxic, but a nationwide ban on the chemical may need to come first. Thus far only six states have banned BPA in baby bottles — Maryland, Connecticut, Minnesota, Washington, Vermont and Wisconsin — along with Chicago and three counties in New York — Albany, Schenectady, Rockland and Suffolk counties. In December 2010, the ban will go statewide in New York, making it state number severn.
Even though no other country has made the call to list BPA as a toxic substance, France is following in Canada’s footsteps on their ban of BPA in baby bottles and Denmark has banned BPA in materials that come in contact with food and beverages.
If you’re not Canadian and have no plans to move north, ask congress to ban BPA in the US. And even though you can’t avoid all BPA, you can choose BPA-free baby bottles and other products to reduce your exposure.