ON-Lion Letter
As the Consumer Product Safety Commission considers (CPSC) a petition calling for bans on a whole category of flame-retardant chemicals, Angela Logomasini warns in a March paper from the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) in Washington, D.C., that such bans could threaten consumer safety.  "Fanning the Flames:  How Banning Flame Retardant Chemicals Puts Consumers at Risk" explores the misguided science behind this petition and how the damaging policy could increase fire risks.

Logomasini is a senior fellow at CEI, which is substantially supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee.

"Congress should pay attention and provide oversight as needed, because such bans or overly burdensome flame retardant regulations could undermine public health and safety and contribute to fire risks," Logomasini explains. 

In July 2015, environmental activist groups, motivated by faulty claims that flame-retardant chemicals pose health risks, petitioned the CPSC to ban certain uses for an entire class of the flame retardant chemicals, collectively referred to as "organohalogens."

"Evidence is scant that trace human exposures to flame retardants through consumer products pose a significant public health risk, while fire risks are real, verifiable, and substantial," according to Logomasini.

A better approach than government bans, she believes, "would allow a more dynamic market process that relies on private standards and certification systems for flammability standards.  Such private systems allow for innovation and swift adjustments to technologies in accordance with improving information and technology, as well as changes in product designs, consumer demand, and lifestyles."
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