Protecting public health and our environment from harmful toxins

Thousands of toxic or untested chemicals are used in products we use every day in our homes, schools, and workplaces. These toxins are building up in our bodies and are 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.

Recent Toxics and Environmental Health News

Governor reverses course; signs bill to protect kids from toxic threats

Late yesterday, Governor Scott signed into law a bill (S.55) that he had previously blocked as both governor and lieutenant governor in its earlier iterations. The law is designed to better protect children from toxic chemicals in products that are made specifically for kids. The new law makes important changes to the Chemicals of High Concern ...

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Governor Signs Bill Protecting Against Lead In School Drinking Water

Today Governor Scott signed into law a landmark bill protecting against lead in school drinking water. The move is being celebrated by environmental advocates across the state. “There’s really only one kind of water we should be giving our kids in schools and child care centers, and that’s unleaded,” commented Paul Burns, Executive Director of ...

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Governor Scott Signs Neonic Restriction Bill Into Law

Neonicotinoid insecticides threaten bees all over the Green Mountain State – which has serious implications for all of us. For instance, the UN just published a sobering report that highlights how crucial biodiversity is and how human activity, like the use of pesticides, is hurting biodiversity around the world. Just as concerning is the fact ...

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Bill to Get Toxics Out of Children’s Products Sent to Governor

Legislation to better protect kids from toxics is now on its way to Governor Scott’s desk for consideration following the Legislature’s final passage of S.55 on May 22.  If signed into law, the legislation will grant the Commissioner of Health greater authority to protect kids from dangerous chemicals in children’s products and collect better information on ...

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Legislators Pass Nation’s Strongest Lead Testing Bill

On Wednesday Vermont’s Legislature passed S. 40, a landmark bill regulating lead in school and childcare center drinking water. After some tense debate between legislators in the House and Senate, a conference committee reached a final decision to set the action level for remediation at 4 parts per billion. They also pledged to set aside $3 ...

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Governor Signs PFAS Protection Bill

Governor Scott signed a landmark bill on Thursday establishing drinking water standards for five perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) – toxic chemicals that have been widely used in industry and consumer products since the 1950s. Known as “forever chemicals” because of their long lifespan, PFAS have been shown to increase cancer risk, impair immune system ...

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Bill to Get Toxics Out of Children’s Products Passes Senate

Late last week, S.55, the bill to regulate toxic chemicals in children’s products, passed out of the Senate on a 25-5 vote. This is a huge step forward in protecting Vermont kids from toxic chemicals, and we are determined to see it cross the finish line in the House. Despite the 25-5 vote, proponents of the ...

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VPIRG: This Mardi Gras season, beware the toxic beads

Montpelier, VT — The Vermont Public Interest Research Group issued a warning today for all those who may be interested in celebrating Mardi Gras with necklaces of cheap plastic beads. The group’s advice? Don’t do it. Or at a minimum, take precautions to minimize toxic threats. Citing past research by the Ecology Center and VerdiGras, VPIRG ...

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