Here’s yet another scientific report about how dangerous chemicals and VOCs are being released from the everyday cleaning products most people use in their homes!
Environmental Defense (Canada) recently released their report THE DIRTY TRUTH, which found that products from some of the biggest cleaning brands (Mr. Clean, Clorox, Lysol, Windex, and PineSol ) pollute the air in Canadians’ homes with harmful chemicals. (Note that these products are not significantly, if at all different in the US, but the EU does have some bans on ingredient that are still allowed here).
ED’s The Dirty Truth follows hot on the heels of Women’s Voices For the Earth’s DEEP CLEAN report, and while both of these reports name names, they had a slightly different focus.
In Deep Clean, Women’s Voices For the Earth graded four major cleaning product manufacturers based on key indicators to expose their commitment to product safety: Product Ingredient Disclosure, Responsiveness to Consumer Concerns, Toxic Chemical Screening Process and Removal of WVE’s Chemicals of Concern.
Dr. Anne Steinemann’s research from earlier this year did not name product names, but she named numerous harmful volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) that the many popular products she tested do release into the air we breathe.
One has to wonder why this is allowed to be going on?
We should not be subjected to harmful industrial pollutants in our own homes!
“Our new report found that products from some of the biggest cleaning brands (Mr. Clean, Clorox, Lysol, Windex, and PineSol ) pollute the air in Canadians’ homes with harmful chemicals called Volatile Organic Compounds. These chemicals have been linked to respiratory problems such as asthma and lower IQs.”
Volatile Organic Compounds and Your Health
“High levels of VOCs can cause eye, nose and throat irritation, shortness of breath, headaches, fatigue, nausea and dizziness. Lower levels can contribute to asthma and skin problems. Higher concentrations can even have neurotoxic effects like causing damage to the liver, kidney, or central nervous system.”
People with MCS/ES suffer severe adverse effects from low levels of these (and other) pollutants, just like the canaries in the mines did. Places where products like these are used are not accessible to people with MCS/ES. In addition to other health harms, toxic chemicals create barriers to access for people who are disabled by exposures to them.
Cleaning should NOT add harmful pollutants to our air, our bodies, and the environment which provides us with life! Cleaning should REMOVE pollutants.
Does this look like what’s in your cleaning cabinet?
Get the full report here: THE DIRTY TRUTH
Read their blog post here: Uncovering the Dirty Truth on cleaning products
ACTION ALERT from ED:
Last year, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne promised to “provide Ontarians with better information about chemicals linked with cancer.” Environmental Defence is calling on Ontario’s government to make good on the promise through stronger product labelling rules.
We are also calling on the federal government to stop the foot-dragging and publish promised regulations for consumer product VOC content. These guidelines were originally set to come out in 2014, but we are still waiting.
From the Women’s Voices For the Earth’s DEEP CLEAN report:
With words like trusted, family, quality, healthy and responsible commonplace throughout their branding and advertising, it’s clear that companies care about gaining the trust and loyalty of the American consumer. But – as our report Deep Clean illustrates – cleaning product companies use the lack of industry regulations as a loophole to keep customers in the dark about how they screen of dangerous chemicals and their overall standards of product safety.
The report rates four major clean product manufacturers on their Product Ingredient Disclosure, Responsiveness to Consumer Concerns, Toxic Chemical Screening Process and Removal of WVE’s Chemicals of Concern. The companies are:
- SC Johnson & Son (makers of Pledge, Shout, Windex, Glade, Scrubbing Bubbles)
- The Clorox Company (makers of Clorox, Pine-Sol, S.O.S., Tilex, Liquid-Plumber, Green Works)
- RB (formerly Reckitt Benckiser) (makers of Woolite, Lysol, Finish, AirWick, Old English)
- Procter & Gamble (makers of Tide, Cascade, Dawn, Mr. Clean, Dreft Laundry, Febreze, Gain, Cheer)
I am one of millions of people from around the world who have had our lives radically altered (and restricted) due to the widespread use of toxic chemicals in everyday products and materials. The health problems these chemical pollutants cause now are costing billions of dollars around the world while contributing to ruining the environment we all depend on for life. They are also creating epigenetic changes that will impact the health of future generations in ways that will make their lives very challenging to live. This shouldn’t be happening and it doesn’t have to stay this way.
If you are reading this and still use these kinds of products, please don’t wait until you, your pets, and your other family members are sick before you do something different.
Switch to safer cleaning, personal care, and laundry products now!
Baking soda, non-gmo vinegar, lemons, hydrogen peroxide, plain soap, soap nuts, and water will clean almost everything. Skip the chemicals (and EOs). Clean has no smell.
Tell the product manufacturers and their government representatives (who we vote into office) that you want products that are safe for us now, and that won’t harm future generations either. Together we can push these health protective changes into effect.