Consumer Product Safety Commission Fails to Adhere to Guidelines During Process of Phthalate Alternative Rulemaking

Proposed Rule to Ban Chemicals is Invalid Because it Uses Outdated Data

New York, NY / Washington, D.C. – The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is once again pushing the boundaries of its regulatory authority by preparing to issue a rule on the basis of outdated data and faulty reasoning. Long known for its overzealous overregulation, the CPSC voted to move forward in late December last year with a draft rule that would ban children’s toys and child care articles containing specified phthalates.

Phthalates are used in a variety of consumer goods to make them more durable and to prevent plastics from shattering. The circumstances surrounding CPSC’s ruling fly in the face of any pretense of scientific reasoning, objectivity or transparency.

Below is an excerpt of comments submitted by Jeff Stier, Senior Fellow at the National Center for Public Policy Research and the head of the Risk Analysis Division (RAD):

What’s worse, even though CPSC was aware of this fatal flaw in the CHAP report, it relied on this aspect of the report, ignoring these concerns that would have surely been raised had the CHAP report been subject to open peer review.

The supposed logic of the extension of the DINP ban is that all exposure, no matter how remote, is a problem.

The CHAP report didn’t even justify an expansion in a direct manner, rather leaving CPSC to conjecture as to a basis for the ban…

When Congress passed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act in 2008, it did not give the CPSC power to remove safe products from the marketplace if the effect of such a ban would be minimal. It simply didn’t give CPSC power to remove products that were safe, or that could only be shown to present a risk based on old exposure data we know to be no-longer accurate.

To view Jeff’s full submission, click here.

The CPSC is still accepting comments from the public. To submit your own comments, visit!docketDetail;D=CPSC-2014-0033.

New York City-based Jeff Stier is a Senior Fellow at the National Center for Public Policy Research in Washington, D.C. and heads its Risk Analysis Division. Stier is a frequent guest on CNBC, and has addressed health policy on CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC, as well as network newscasts. Stier’s National Center op-eds have been published in top outlets, including the Los Angeles Times, the New York Post, Newsday, Forbes, the Washington Examiner and National Review Online. He also frequently discusses risk issues on Twitter at @JeffaStier.

The National Center for Public Policy Research, founded in 1982, is a non-partisan, free-market, independent conservative think-tank. Ninety-four percent of its support comes from individuals, three percent from foundations, and three percent from corporations. It receives over 350,000 individual contributions a year from over 96,000 active recent contributors.

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