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This occasional Bulletin includes brief updates on precautionary campaigns, victories and actions as well as new reports, websites and resources. Please send your News of Note or Resources for the next BE SAFE Bulletin to Thanks.


NEWS OF NOTE NY Pollution Prevention Institute, WA Ban on Toxic Flame Retardants, Green Building Council Guided by Precaution, Target PVC Day of Action, BE SAFE Regional Meetings and Estimated $50 Billion in Health Benefits From REACH

NEW RESOURCES True Cost Clearinghouse, Disease Database, Toxipedia, Precautionary Futures Reports, Preventing Occupational Cancer, Precaution Reporter and Sam Suds Video.


NY Governor Approves $2 Million Pollution Prevention Institute
A NYS Pollution Prevention Institute was recently approved in the state budget with a focus on pollution prevention research and development, including green chemistry, thanks to the leadership of Governor Spitzer. BE SAFE advocated for the proposal with Citizens' Environmental Coalition and the Alliance for a Toxic-Free Future. The next step is to develop a list of possible projects based on priority environmental, health and labor impacts in New York State, such as addressing PBT chemical releases. Any ideas? Contact CEC at

Washington Passes First Ban on All Toxic Flame Retardants

Legislation banning all forms of toxic flame retardants was passed recently by the Washington State Legislature. State agencies had requested the action, which was supported by fire associations, health and environmental groups, such as WA Toxics Coalition and WA State Nurses Association. For more information, contact WA Toxics Coalition at 206-632-1545 or

US Green Building Council Reaffirms Commitment to Precaution

The national council reaffirmed its commitment to precaution in its Guiding Principles in a February report by its Technical and Scientific Advisory Committee. It states that, "USGBC will be guided by the precautionary principle in utilizing technical and scientific data to protect, preserve, and restore the health of the global environment, ecosystems and species."

Groups Urge Target to Take Precautionary Action on PVC May 24th
Join CHEJ and over 50 groups from around the country at a national PVC Day of Action May 24th to urge retail giant Target to phase out PVC. Unfortunately Target lags behind Wal-Mart and other major retailers in phasing out this unnecessary and dangerous plastic.

BE SAFE Organizing Regional Meetings on Precaution
BE SAFE is hosting regional meetings with partner groups to promote precautionary action on a wide range of environmental hazards. For instance, groups in NC are focusing on sewage sludge, nuclear power and megadumps; NY is targeting green purchasing and pollution prevention policies; and FL is moving on school green cleaning programs. How can your group take precautionary action to prevent harm from an environmental hazard? A regional meeting can help spur action and bring together allies to develop a plan of action. BE SAFE and the Environmental Research Foundation can facilitate precautionary strategy sessions, and share local, state and national updates and model policies. Interested in hosting a meeting? Contact BE SAFE at or 518-732-4538.

Analysis Shows Industry Copes with REACh with $50 Billion in Health Benefits
An analysis published in the Journal of Environmental Management found that while the European Union's precautionary chemical regulations "will bring challenges for individual companies...for the European chemical industry as a whole, there is no question that it will be able to cope with REACh (Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals) burdens without losing its global competitiveness." (2/22/07 Abstract). The article notes the total cost burden of REACh approaches $7.5 billion for industry per the European Commission -- and the benefits of improved occupational and public health protections is assessed at $50 billion over a 30 year period.



True Cost Clearinghouse
You can find articles and reports on the economic and social costs of pollution, worker exposure and resource exploitation, as well as the underreported benefits of precaution and cleanup policies, on this new clearinghouse by Science and Environmental Health Network.

CHE Toxicant & Disease Database
The Collaborative on Health and the Environment's searchable database summarizes links between chemicals and approximately 180 human diseases or conditions.

A toxicology encyclopedia and resource center website has been launched with a goal to provide information on the hazards and risks of chemicals and connect science and people. Anyone can edit with a quality control system to ensure accuracy of information.


Charting a Precautionary Future
Two interesting reports were recently released - 1) The Future of Foresight: Long Term Strategic Considerations for Promoting the Precautionary Principle and 2) Mapping 2020: Charting a Precautionary Future - Exploring Scenarios for the Unfolding Precautionary Movement. The publications are by Science and Environmental Health Network and smartMeme Strategy & Training Project. To obtain copies, contact

Occupational Cancer Prevention Guide

A new cancer prevention guide, Occupational Cancer/Zero Cancer: a union guide to prevention, reveals that over 600,000 deaths a year--1 death every 52 seconds--are caused by occupational cancer, making up almost one-third of all work-related deaths. The guide was produced as part of the first international zero occupational cancer campaign, involving 11 global trade union organizations representing over 300 million members in more than 150 countries.

Precaution Reporter

This great e-bulletin offers news, views and practical examples of the Precautionary Principle. It's not a new resource, but in case you aren't receiving it, we urge you to subscribe to Rachel's Precaution Reporter by Environmental Research Foundation. Send a blank email to for full HTML version and for Table of Contents edition email


Watch Hilarious Video about Poison Plastic
Check out this funny, 3-minute spoof video, Sam Suds and the Case of PVC, the Poison Plastic and learn how Detective Sam Suds solves the case of the poison plastic in the Johnson's home.

Thank you for taking the time to review the BE SAFE Bulletin.
*Send your group's precautionary action updates and new resources for the next Bulletin to or call me at 518-732-4538.