This week, the Food and Drug Administration ruled that BPA (short for bisphenol A), an industrial chemical that has been used in some plastics since the 1960s, can no longer be used in baby bottles and children’s drinking cups. It can, however, still be used in other common household products.
According to the NY Times, FDA spokesman Steven Immergut, emphasized that the decision did not amount to a reversal of the agency’s position on the chemical. The FDA declared BPA safe in 2008, but began expressing concerns about possible health risks in 2010.
“Today’s action is based on industry’s abandonment of these uses of BPA,” Mr. Immergut said. “The agency continues to support the safety of BPA for use in products that hold food.” Continue reading
A lot. According to CalRecycle’s Biannual Report of Beverage Container Sales, Returns, Redemption, and Recycling Rates, released last week, Californians recycled over 16 billion beverage containers in 2011. For a state that is home to 38 million people, that number seems pretty impressive. California continues to lead the nation in total quantity of bottles and cans recycled.
According to the report, 4,504,934,972 aluminum cans were purchased from July to December in 2011 with 4,276,266,506 of those cans getting recycled – that’s a 95% recycling rate!
The overall recycling rate for the first half of 2011 was 86% The second half calendar year recycling rate was lower than the first half at 79%, which is consistent with the trend observed over the life of the recycling program. Continue reading