The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Report: 140 House Members Vote Against Chemical Safeguards Every Time
The Environmental Working Group Action Fund, the political arm of the Environmental Working Group (EWG), released a first-ever report that scores how each member of the U.S. House of Representatives voted on chemical policy and safety.
The scorecard shows that 140 House members voted against chemical safeguards every time, while 149 members consistently voted for chemical safety protections.
"While no president has ever done as much to weaken safeguards for toxic chemicals as Donald Trump, too many members of Congress have collaborated with the Trump administration or cast votes in favor of policies that reversed or delayed chemical bans, gutted chemical safety rules, rejected sound science, weakened worker and consumer protections, and denied justice to asbestos victims," the report said.
The report specifically focused on
17 bills and amendments that were up for a vote during the 115th and 114th Congresses.
The EWG Action Fund also singled out several lawmakers, including Rep. Jason Lewis (R-Minn.), Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas), Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas), Rep. Jason Smith (R-Mo.) and Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-Calif.), who the action fund says introduced or co-sponsored measures that weaken existing chemical safety laws.
"Over and over, too many legislators voted to support President Trump's agenda to eliminate toxic chemical safeguards," said Scott Faber, speaking on behalf of EWG Action Fund, in a statement received by EcoWatch.
"Too many members of Congress have collaborated with the Trump administration to advance policies that reject sound science and weaken worker and consumer protections," Faber added. "And many more stood by silently when Trump's EPA reversed or delayed chemical bans or gutted chemical safety rules."
Most Republican members of Congress were graded poorly in the report. However, the action fund praised the lawmakers that bucked their party to vote for chemical safety, including Reps. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), John Duncan (R-Tenn.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and others who voted to protect asbestos victims.
The action fund also noted that Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) voted for funding chemical reviews and against a farm bill that included pesticide safety loopholes. Florida Reps. Carlos Curbelo and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen voted against efforts to weaken agency science, and Illinois Republican Rep. Rodney Davis voted against toxic air pollution loopholes.
- Russian Asbestos Company Makes Trump Its Poster Boy ›
- Why Asbestos Is Still a Major Public Health Threat in the U.S. ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Erica Cirino
Visit a coral reef off the coast of Miami or the Maldives and you may see fields of bleached white instead of a burst of colors.
By Jason Bittel
High up in the mountains of Montana's Glacier National Park, there are two species of insect that only a fly fishermen or entomologist would probably recognize. Known as stoneflies, these aquatic bugs are similar to dragonflies and mayflies in that they spend part of their lives underwater before emerging onto the land, where they transform into winged adults less than a half inch long. However, unlike those other species, stoneflies do their thing only where cold, clean waters flow.
By Bob Curley
- The new chicken sandwiches at McDonald's, Popeyes, and Chick-fil-A all contain the MSG flavor enhancement chemical.
- Experts say MSG can enhance the so-called umami flavor of a food.
- The ingredient is found in everything from Chinese food and pizza to prepackaged sandwiches and table sauces.
McDonald's wants to get in on the chicken sandwich war currently being waged between Popeyes and Chick-fil-A.
By Andrea Germanos
Youth climate activists marched through the streets of Davos, Switzerland Friday as the World Economic Forum wrapped up in a Fridays for Future demonstration underscoring their demand that the global elite act swiftly to tackle the climate emergency.
By Tim Radford
The year is less than four weeks old, but scientists already know that carbon dioxide emissions will continue to head upwards — as they have every year since measurements began — leading to a continuation of the Earth's rising heat.