The Strategy Center Blog

Please read and share our latest thoughts on safer chemicals policy, products, health and disease prevention, biobased manufacturing and the green economy, environmental health and justice, and much more. 

After over six years with the Strategy Center, Emma Halas-O’Connor is departing for law school. She will be sorely missed, but she’s leaving on a high note: In her last weeks here, the Maine Legislature voted to override the Governor’s veto of LD 454, our bill to expand outreach and education around arsenic exposure through well water, and turned that important bill into law. In this blog post, Emma looks back on the long journey that led to this victory for safe drinking water for all Maine...+ Read more
Kraft Heinz Urged to Lead Industry-Wide Change On those evenings when time is tight and the cupboard is uninspiring, parents and babysitters across the country know they can rely on good old macaroni and cheese for a crowd-pleasing kids’ meal. But new tests raise questions about this popular comfort food. Toxic industrial chemicals were discovered in individual packets of cheese powder from several companies’ macaroni and cheese products, announced the Coalition for Safer Food Processing &...+ Read more
A guest blog by Jennifer Sass, Senior Scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). The Trump-Pruitt Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a set of rules last week that will make it easier to ignore chemical risks and disregard harmful exposures. The final rules introduce loopholes that could allow EPA to ignore important exposure routes and chemical product uses. This opens the door for EPA to disregard exposures to the most vulnerable and susceptible populations such as...+ Read more
What does it take to pass safe drinking water law for children and families? Mom power! Our victory Monday in the Maine State House—safe drinking water law, passed with a strong, bipartisan veto override—will boost well-water testing and protect thousands of children and families in Maine's rural areas from drinking water contaminated by arsenic, which causes bladder, lung, and skin cancer, and harms children’s developing brains. Will you make a gift of $20 or more to pay tribute to the moms...+ Read more
By Mike Schade, Mind the Store campaign director for the Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families coalition. The Strategy Center is a founding member of the coalition. Today we co-released a new report that found toxic BPA in nearly 40% of food cans tested from the nation’s largest grocery stores and dollar store chains. The report, “ Kicking the Can? Major retailers still selling canned food with BPA ,” authored by our coalition partners the Center for Environmental Health (CEH) , shows that millions...+ Read more
EHSC Moms bus to Washington. D.C. spring 2012
In our office yesterday, staff members shared a memory. It was four years ago this spring that a group of two-dozen Maine moms (along with some grandparents, college students, and others) boarded a bus with us. We headed down the highway to Washington, D.C., to join hundreds of other advocates who had come from all over the country to talk to members of Congress about the importance of overhauling the nation’s broken chemical safety system. The moms weren’t happy that Congress had repeatedly...+ Read more
How did Senator Angus King describe it, earlier this spring. . . ? Oh, that’s right. He said it was as devastating as “a natural disaster.” In late March, with leaders from federal economic development agencies who were touring Maine’s Lincoln Lakes and Katahdin regions, King said, “What’s happened in the paper industry in Maine is like a natural disaster. We have lost six mills in five years." The senator said about 1,400 direct paper jobs were lost, and nearly twice that many jobs were “lost...+ Read more
Congress has passed two bills to fix our broken chemical safety system under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), and negotiations on long-needed federal chemical reform are coming down to the wire. Reasonable chemical safety reform for the nation is within reach. But we’re worried: the Senate bill still on the table could block state action to protect children’s health from toxic chemicals in products. “The Pause” Passed in December 2015, the Senate bill would block states from restricting...+ Read more
For anyone who’s ever doubted it, Mom was right. Especially when she said people have the right to know what chemicals are in the products they buy. Thanks to a lot of moms, a new national report issued this week reveals that a group of toxic chemicals are used in a broader range of household products than previously known. "What Stinks? Toxic Phthalates in Your Home" was conceived and authored by the Maine-based Environmental Health Strategy Center and Prevent Harm and is cosponsored by Safer...+ Read more
A national report released in March has verified that canned foods are still a major source of exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA), revealing its presence in the linings of two out of three cans of food distributed by popular national brands. Nearly 200 cans of food were tested. Buyer Beware: Toxic BPA & Regrettable Substitutes in the Linings of Canned Food , released in early March 2016, was conceived and authored by the national Mind the Store campaign of Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families, a...+ Read more