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It was sometime in February 2005 that I picked up a copy of Delicious Living Magazine and read the article, "Plastic Planet", which is still available online here: http://deliciouslivingmag.com/greenliving/dl_article_1527/index.html .
I recommend reading this article.
You see, I had been hearing around, as an environmentalist, that there were these dangers from some plastics - it was somehow tied into the whole issue of manufacturing them, which is a toxic industry anyway - and recycling them and not just putting them in landfills.
Also, when I found this article I read it all the way through and kept a copy of part of it for my own reference as the article has a "by-the-numbers guide to safety" - it gives the numbers of the plastics that have "no known health hazards" (1, 2, 4, 5) and the ones with "potential health hazards" (3, 6, 7).
#3, Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC or vinyl) quote from the Feb. 2005 article:
"Some research has shown that the phthalates in PVC cling wraps (commonly used
in delis and supermarkets) and vinyl flooring are endocrine disruptors linked to
various health problems. Water and vegetable oils sometimes are bottled in
PVC, and many toys and baby teethers contain PVC."
So, this is the one with the phthalates.
But having recently been reading about vinyl showing with XRF testing to contain lead, I am now wondering if it also contains lead - and if the lead is leachable.
This article, "Plastic Planet" discusses many different issues - and using the plastics "...for what they were intended for and approved for."
Personally, I am careful for myself - have tried to be ever since reading this article -- avoiding 3, 6, and 7 plastics -- my vegetable oil (olive and sesame) bottles are glass!
My reusable water bottle is stainless steel - not plastic at all any more - and I rarely buy any drinks in plastic bottles when I am out any more, though I slip up occasionally - and I watch the number on the bottle.
(I also read the food labels for ingredients - part of watching my diet - this is me! LOL!)
I am glad that the CPSIA bans children's childcare/teething products (including synthetic fiber clothing items that contain phthalates) with phthalates in them - and I am glad that it is retroactive for existing inventory as of today.
I actually want products made with phthalates, styrene, BPA etc. taken out of the market place for everyone.
You would have a hard time convincing me that the manufacturers of plastic products did not have this information available to them years ago - and could have voluntarily stopped making products with these materials that are "potential health hazards".
-- And I rarely use that Microwave, sitting there cold and neglected on my counter, except to heat some water once in a while, if I have to - but never with any plastic containers. But that is another health matter to be covered another time.
Again - to a healthier world!!