What happened: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) withdrew its proposed ban on three chemicals – trichloroethylene (TCE), N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP), and methylene chloride. This action sidelined EPA scientists who had originally proposed the bans in 2016 and 2017 due to the weight of evidence suggesting that these chemicals were highly toxic.
Why it matters: Despite the science suggesting these chemicals are highly dangerous to human health, the EPA allowed the continued use of these chemicals. TCE, NMP, and methylene chloride are found in degreasers, paint strippers, and other industrial products, and have been associated with several cancers and birth defects. The EPA’s mission is to protect people from health hazards like exposure to toxic chemicals, and by ignoring the science and sidelining its own scientists, the agency placed political considerations over the health and safety of people across the US.
Learn more about how the EPA failed to follow the science and ban the toxic chemicals TCE, NMP, and methylene chloride, and how the Trump administration previously downplayed the science linking TCE to fetal heart defects.