Making Vermont a safer and healthier place to live by reducing waste and eliminating toxins from consumer products, drinking water, and our environment.

Thousands of toxic or untested chemicals are used in products we’re exposed to every day in our homes, schools, and workplaces. From PFAS in our drinking water to pesticides in our natural environment to harmful chemicals found in single-use plastics and other consumer products, there are simply too many hidden dangers. These toxins are building up in our bodies and contributing to alarming trends in public health, including increased rates of birth defects, developmental disabilities, reproductive disorders, cancers, and more.

VPIRG supports federal and state legislation that will get known toxins out of consumer products and require health and safety testing before chemicals make it into products on our store shelves. We are also committed to promoting a circular economy that reduces waste, creates jobs, and holds manufacturers accountable for environmental impacts from the full life cycle of products they create.

Learn more about our Environmental Health campaigns:


Recent Environmental Health News

VPIRG Statement on Lead-Containing Mugs

“We want to make sure people across the region are aware that Vermont Public Radio mugs from 2002-2011 were found to contain lead. The lead contamination was found in the painted design on the outside of the mug. Since no level of lead is safe, we recommend people stop using these mugs immediately. Even at very ...

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A new report and an old VPIRG fight for chemical reform

A new report from the Breast Cancer Fund, Disrupted Development: the Dangers of Prenatal BPA Exposure reminds us of the importance of Vermont’s 2010 bill to ban bisphenol A (BPA) from certain products – but also highlights how much further we have to go to fully protect Vermonters’ health from toxic chemicals. In 2010, Vermont banned ...

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Protect Our Kids from Toxic Chemicals

Thousands of untested chemicals are used in our homes, schools, food and work places every day. We need a better chemical regulatory system so we can all have confidence that the products in our homes and on our store shelves are healthy and safe. Take a stand to protect your family from toxic chemicals ...

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Legislation to Protect Vermonters from Toxic Flame Retardant Chemicals Becomes Law

VPIRG Environmental Health Advocate, Lauren Hierl, joined Governor Shumlin, legislators, and fire fighters to celebrate toxic flame retardant ban at the fire station in Burlington. Read Lauren’s address made at the bill signing: “I’m thrilled to join today’s celebration as Governor Shumlin signs into law the nation’s strongest bill to protect kids and fire fighters from toxic ...

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S.81 – Banning Toxic Flame Retardants

Upon learning that a cancer-causing chemical banned from children’s pajamas in the 1970s (chlorinated Tris) had found its way into numerous other children’s products and home furniture, VPIRG and our fire fighter allies successfully pushed for a ban on Tris in these products. The legislature unanimously supported this bill, which puts in place the nation’s strongest ...

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Legislative Accomplishments 2013

The legislative session is over, and the results are in.  Here at VPIRG, we’re celebrating the victories that our members helped to bring about. Thank you! Of course, we didn’t win every fight.  The Legislature failed to commit the necessary resources to weatherize our homes and businesses, for example.  But we’re taking the time to celebrate the ...

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Ban on Toxic Flame Retardants Moves Another Step Closer to Final Passage

For Immediate Release:   May 3, 2013 Montpelier, VT – After a long week of late night debates and close votes, the House Human Services Committee came together across party lines to approve a bill that bans toxic and ineffective flame retardant chemicals from children’s products and home furniture (S.81, vote: 10-0-1). The bill will be considered ...

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