Just got back from a couple weeks away from civilization and I swear I must have caught something. The fever's passed but I'm pretty sure I'm still hallucinating. At least that's how I've felt catching up on the eco news. First a bill looking to ban one of the top families of chemicals on my hate-on list (phthalates) passed third reading in parliament. What happened here? I'm used to Canadian politicians dragging their mukluks in the slush on this front, making loads of promises to investigate chemicals but sputtering out on the delivery.
Now, if all goes well (it still needs to pass the Senate), three seriously dangerous chems in the phthalate family will be stricken from kids' products, cosmetics and medical devices (ilke PVC IV bags). It's about time. Since the late 90s, wee things under one were the only ones who've been protected from these chems by voluntary safeguards (Health Canada asked retailers nicely to stop carrying soothers and rattlers made of PVC, especially if they contained one type of phthalate). Anyone over one has been, well, screwed.
Speaking of being screwed, wonder whether this'll cover, um, adult toys too. Seriously. A 2003 German study found Canadian sex toys offgas up to 3000 times the permissible limit of the hormone disruptors! You gotta figure some lonely readers have been putting themselves at serious risk.
Shocking news story number two. Mountain Equipment Coop has banned polycarbonate water bottles (you know, those clear plastic ones synonymous with the hiking boot set) from its stores! A lot of Ecoholic readers will be happy about that one. Especially the few that emailed me months ago outraged that some MEC stores had the gall to post signs justifying their ongoing sales of the plastic. Some were so pissed they filed complaints with management and dumped their old polycarbonate bottles in MEC stores. Good work, boys and girls. Clearly your lobbying got through to them! I think it's time for a celebratory drink (in an inert glass vessel, of course), don't you?