The land of Old Faithful wasn’t always so lush. Two decades ago, Yellowstone National Park was the victim of defoliation, erosion and an unbalanced ecosystem. But in 1995, everything changed.
For years, manufacturers of lead products have misled the American public and blamed citizens for lead’s destructive health impacts.
I was thinking about the upcoming oral arguments scheduled for November 18 in the Navajo Generating Station coal plant case when I saw a news report that EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy bragged about how the agency had cleaned up haze pollution in Shenandoah National Park. It struck me as ironic that the EPA should claim this particular mission-accomplished status a scant month before court arguments on the Navajo Generating Station.
If a lead inspector came to your house and told you that your house paint was not lead-based and that your house dust isn’t a lead hazard, you’d think you and your family were definitely safe from exposure to lead in your home, right?
Well, you’d be wrong.
That’s because of a couple lines of text in outdated U.S. EPA regulations that define what constitutes a “dust-lead hazard” and what qualifies as “lead-based paint.” In both cases, the EPA’s standards fall far short of protecting human health.
[Editor’s note: Recently, the EPA announced that it will move quickly to evaluate five persistent, bio accumulative and toxic chemicals under the updated chemical safety law, known as the Toxic Substances Control Act, which mandates that the agency review existing chemicals under specific deadlines. Under the old law, only five of 62,000-plus chemicals on the market have been banned since 1976.]