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
An Agency of Natural Resources-commissioned Bottle Bill study is expected out this Friday which, despite the program’s overwhelming popularity and undisputed success, is likely to prompt a renewed debate over the future of the program. Bottle Bill supporters directly impacted by the legislature’s actions – including small businesses and community groups – gathered at the ...Read More
Vermont’s Bottle Bill is our state’s most successful recycling program and a model we can build on to help move Vermont toward a zero-waste future. A Clean and Green Vermont: A Special Report on the Environmental and Economical Benefits of Vermont’s Bottle Bill, released by VPIRG and the Container Recycling Institute, examines ways in which ...Read More
Firefighters, parents, public health advocates, and legislators gathered at the State House today to call on the legislature to pass a bill (S.81) to expand the state’s 2009 ban on toxic flame retardant chemicals. These chemicals are widely used in baby products and furniture, but are linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, reproductive harm, and other ...Read More
A new report, Naptime Nightmares: Toxic Flame Retardants in Child Care Nap Mats, shows that nap mats used in daycares throughout Vermont and nationwide contain harmful flame retardant chemicals. These unnecessary and ineffective chemicals expose our children to substances that can cause cancer and have been linked to developmental problems, hormone disruption, and other serious health ...Read More
Vermont’s “green cleaning” legislation—which VPIRG helped to pass last year—earned national attention in a new report released today, entitled: “Towards Healthy Schools 2015: Progress on America’s Environmental Health Crisis for Children.” This report shows Vermont is now on the forefront of keeping our kids’ learning environments safe from toxic chemicals. You can find the full report ...Read More
In her testimony today, VPIRG’s Lauren Hierl explained to the House Committee on Health and Human Services how the chemical industry has been quietly adding an ineffective and cancer-causing flame retardant to couches, cribs and other baby products–like the ones she purchases for her son, Elias. Three years ago, when facts came to light about the ...Read More
Health Care | Environmental Health | Clean Energy Democracy | Consumer Protection (Click one of these categories to skip to a specific section.) Health Care Health Care for All, and Keeping Our Eyes on the Prize For years, Vermont has been a leader in making health care accessible and affordable. Our long term goal is a single payer model that will ...Read More
A Bigger Better Bottle Bill Every year, the Bottle Bill keeps roughly 250 million containers from littering our roadsides or cramming our landfills. So, while the state studies how best to renew its commitment to recycling and zero-waste, one thing’s for sure: we should expand our most successful recycling program, the Bottle Bill. The Bottle Bill ...Read More