Daily News Archive
From August 28, 2006
Pursuing Safer Chemicals in Consumer Products
Governor Baldacci’s recent amendment to the order, An Order Amending the Order Promoting Safer Chemicals in Consumer Products and Service, calls for a 13-member task force to be appointed by and serve at the pleasure of the Governor. The diverse membership includes three members of the Alliance for a Clean and Healthy Maine. Nick Bennett, staff scientist of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, will represent environmental groups. Mike Belliveau, director of the Environmental Health Strategy Center, will represent public health groups. Sharon Tisher, professor of environmental law at the University of Maine, will also represent the Alliance for a Clean and Healthy Maine. Also included on the taskforce is an IPM Coordinator. The Department of Agriculture IPM Coordinator and the Cooperative Extension IPM Coordinator will share staffing of this single position; in the event of voting this position will have only one vote.
The Alliance for a Clean and Healthy Maine, a coalition of health-affected groups and public health, labor, environmental, grassroots, and professional organizations, applauded Gov. John Baldacci on convening the Governor’s Task Force to Promote Safer Chemicals in Consumer Products.
Nick Bennett, staff scientist for the Natural Resources and Defense Council of Maine said, “Data from countless studies show persistent, toxic chemicals in places they shouldn't be: in human breast milk, the blood of newborn babies, whales, eagles, and peregrine falcons, to name a few. This task force can help Maine stop using these types of chemicals and push the chemical industry to make safer products that won't contaminate our citizens and wildlife.”
The task force will
also work on increasing research and development of safer alternatives
to priority chemicals in consumer products, including investment in
"green chemistry." This initiative could mean a new natural
resource-based industry for the state, such as plastics made from Maine
potatoes and other agricultural and forest products.
The Alliance for a Clean and Healthy Maine feels that the Governor’s Task Force will be able to take the important first step of developing recommended legislation and incentives to promote safer chemicals to protect Maine families.
For more information, contact the Alliance for a Clean and Healthy Maine and its campaign partners through its website, http://www.preventharm.org/camp.part.shtml, or through the Environmental Health Strategy Center, P.O. Box 2217, Bangor, Maine 04402, 207-827-6331.