Traces of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) 11—which belongs to a harmful group of chemicals banned in the 1970s—were found in yellow paints and dyes used in common items such as clothing and paper, according to new research from Rutgers University.
HSPH’s Aaron Bernstein, discussed the findings with FOX News Boston on February 25, 2014. Bernstein is associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment (CHGE) an instructor in the Department of Environmental Health, and a pediatrician at Boston Children’s Hospital.
While relatively little is known about PCB-11 itself, some very similar chemicals in the PCB family are known to have serious health effects. Bernstein noted that while the findings of the study are concerning, the real lesson is that we need a fresh start when it comes to how chemicals get into our environment.
“How does that happen?” he asked. “The answer is that we have a ‘buy now, pay later’ approach to chemicals in this country. Chemicals too often get into use in everyday products, and then we learn later whether or not they are safe.”
Watch Long-banned Chemical Found in Yellow Dye: How Concerned Should We Be? (FOX News Boston)
Read more environmental health stories (HSPH News)