By: Cassandra Anderson
The industry-controlled EPA promised to release its dioxin hazard reassessment report, but blew its own deadline – again. Amazingly, the original dioxin toxicity report was due out in 1985. Dioxin is extremely toxic and can cause cancer, birth defects, liver damage and many other harmful effects.
Monsanto and Dow Chemical were the top 2 dioxin producers, a byproduct of the herbicide 2,4,5-T; 300 million pounds of their dioxin-laden herbicide pollutes 400 million acres across the United States. Herbicide 2,4,5-T is half the recipe for Agent Orange; the poison was phased out by the late 1970’s.
Dioxin released in the air increased 10% from 2009-2010. Of course Dow Chemical is currently the #2 producer of dioxin in the US.
Dow Chemical has spent $12 million lobbying the EPA since the EPA announced its intent to reassess dioxin. On the flip side, American taxpayers bankrolled the EPA for over $10 billion in 2010 alone.
Corporate industries stand to lose everything if the word about dioxin gets out, including manufacturers who use chlorine in products like paper, weed killers, and plastic manufacturers. The biggest source of dioxin absorption in humans is meat, dairy and eggs. Industrial agriculture has also lobbied hard to stop the release of the EPA report to cover up the danger lurking in food.
Dioxin polluters would go out of business if people understood how dangerous it was and stopped using bleached products, chlorine, weed killers, and caustic plastic.
Almost every man, woman and child in the US has measurable dioxin levels in their bodies.
The US government continues to protect polluters like Monsanto and Dow Chemical for the horrors that they have caused. If the EPA’s dioxin report is ever released and criminal polluters were prosecuted and subsequently had to pay for human health and environmental damage, they would go bankrupt.
Here is a brief timeline of EPA stalling:
• January 26, 2012: Thousands of individuals and organizations from across the United States have written to the EPA requesting the agency to finalize this study once and for all.
• January 10, 2012: Representative Ed Markey (D-MA), Ranking Member of the Natural Resources Committee and senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, sent the EPA a letter urging the agency to complete the dioxin study.
• January 2012: EPA announced dioxin releases increased by 18% from 2009-2010, and dioxin air releases increased by 10%.
• December 2011: American Chemistry Council and coalition of agricultural trade associations pressure EPA to delay release of EPA’s noncancer dioxin study, scheduled to be released the end of January 2012.
• August 2011: EPA announced its final plan for completing their study on dioxin, which the EPA has been working on since 1985.
• April 2011: Rep. Markey and 72 members of Congress sent a letter to the EPA calling on the agency to release this study.