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Misguided Law Could Hurt Maine Families and Small Businesses

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Andrew Fasoli
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WASHINGTON (July 15, 2021) – Yesterday in Maine, LD1503 became law -- legislation that will ban thousands of products that utilize PFAS technologies.  Below is a statement that can be attributed to the American Chemistry Council.

“The American Chemistry Council (ACC) support strong, science based regulations that are protective of human health and the environment, and have a strong track record of working in a bipartisan fashion at the state and federal level to enact meaningful policies that protect consumers.

“Unfortunately, as written, this misguided law will eventually ban thousands of products that Maine families and businesses rely on without providing meaningful impact on public health. It will impact every major industry in Maine, including forest products, healthcare, textiles, electronics, and construction. In fact, it undermines effective product design, and in some cases, product safety and efficacy, including for applications that are important for public safety and public health.  One critical and timely example is that this law could restrict critical materials that are essential to COVID testing, treatment, and vaccine distribution. 

“This law will also adversely impact critical uses of PFAS that are important for Maine’s broader sustainability objectives, including support for alternative energy and greenhouse gas reduction efforts, which Governor Mills has championed during her time in office.

“PFAS are a diverse universe of chemistries that are essential to modern life.  These chemistries provide products with strength, durability, stability, and resilience. These properties are critical to the reliable and safe function of a broad range of products that are important for industry and consumers.  Importantly, all PFAS are not the same. Individual chemistries have their own unique properties, as well as environmental and health profiles. A one-size-fits-all approach to chemical regulation is neither scientifically accurate, nor appropriate. Furthermore, in the U.S., there is regulatory process explicitly established for new PFAS chemistries, under which new PFAS substances are subject to review under TSCA Section 5(e) orders before they are brought to market.

“It is our sincere hope that the legislature will realize the unintended consequences of this new law and work to fix the problems in the next legislative session. We are hopeful that since the Governor did not officially sign the bill, this could present an open door to make needed changes.”

American Chemistry Council

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people's lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care®; common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues; and health and environmental research and product testing. The business of chemistry is a $486 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation's economy. It is among the largest exporters in the nation, accounting for ten percent of all U.S. goods exports. Chemistry companies are among the largest investors in research and development. Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the nation’s critical infrastructure.

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