Even as families across the country are grappling with the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, Trump’s EPA is working overtime to weaken pollution standards that protect our health. EPA’s new evaluation of Tricloroethylene, or TCE, is a case in point.
Very low exposure to TCE has been linked to fetal heart defects that cause life-long health issues for our kids.
TCE is a solvent commonly found in tool cleaners, paint removers, spray adhesives, carpet cleaners, and spot removers. It can seep into groundwater and soil and lingers in the air, breaking down slowly over time. Prolonged exposure through drinking water, skin contact, or inhaling can lead to liver and kidney cancer. Yet despite these known harms, Trump’s EPA is deliberately ignoring the massive amounts of TCE released into our air, water, and land when evaluating the chemical. The agency has claimed it simply won’t consider air, water, and land releases of TCE when evaluating the chemical’s risk, despite the fact that these are known sources of harmful exposure.
And perhaps most damaging, EPA’s Andrew Wheeler is completely excluding fetal heart defects from determinations of TCE’s health risks. This is an outrageous snub of decades of scientific research. Our babies’ hearts deserve better.
The EPA’s new risk-evaluation would grossly underestimate the risks to public health from exposure to this chemical. EPA chief Andrew Wheeler must be held accountable for increasing the risk of fetal heart malformations and cancer.
This move adds to the long list of attacks Administrator Wheeler has made on our children’s health. The EPA is undermining life-saving science, rolling back protections on air pollution, threatening our babies’ brains by limiting mercury rules, and now putting our babies’ hearts at risk from dangerous chemicals.
We will not let Trump’s EPA get away with this constant barrage of attacks on our family’s health. As the coronavirus pandemic has made clear, we need rigorous science to guide public health policies. Ignoring the science on TCE threatens our children. We will raise our voices together and fight back with everything we have. Thank you for being a crucial voice in the fight.