Small Business Administration Intervenes on Behalf of Formaldehyde Makers
Thursday, May 17, 2012
The Small Business Administration (SBA), which has nothing to do with regulating harmful chemicals, has sided with large manufacturers opposing the government’s listing of formaldehyde as a carcinogen.
Within the SBA is the Office of Advocacy, which recently told the federal National Toxicology Program (NTP) that it should not include formaldehyde on the list of known cancer-causing agents.
It is unclear why the SBA stuck its nose into the debate over the chemical. But its reasoning for opposing the listing of formaldehyde mirrors that of corporations like DuPont, which is hardly a small business, that have fought the carcinogen label on grounds that it might weaken the chemical’s demand.
Health concerns over formaldehyde, which is used in products ranging from mascara to toothpaste to flooring, are nothing new. Laboratory tests in the 1970s revealed the agent caused cancer in rats.
In fighting the NTP over formaldehyde, the SBA reportedly “questioned the quality of the scientific analysis” regarding the chemical and noted that labeling it a carcinogen might adversely impact “small businesses’ workers’ compensation costs,” reported OMB Watch, a non-governmental watchdog organization.
To Learn More:
Why Is the Small Business Administration Arguing that Formaldehyde Doesn’t Cause Cancer? (OMB Watch)
Formaldehyde Added to List of Cancer-Causing Chemicals (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)
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