Brominated Flame Retardants banned in the U.S since 2004 have also remained in firefighter station wear. Brominated FR has a wide array of health effects on the human body. Exposure is associated with neurological problems, endocrine disruption, cancer, and infertility. Like PFAS, they also remain persistent in the environment. Brominated FR is so persistent that newborns born today will have Brominated FR in their bodies at birth. In the documentary “Toxic Hot Seat,” big tobacco and chemical companies colluded for the use of Brominated FR. Big tobacco didn’t want to develop a self-extinguishing cigarette to curb cigarette-caused house fires.
Consequently, this allowed big tobacco and chemical companies to open a pandora’s box of environmental and human health hazards. Fun fact, flame retardants don’t even work. The U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission noted, the chemicals weren’t even effective when added to various materials.
In 2005, The Science Advisory Board, at the request of the EPA, gathered to conduct a peer-reviewed risk assessment of the EPA Assessment of Potential Human Health Effects Associated with Perfluorooctanoic Acid and its salts (PFAS). The request for peer-review was dated January 1st, 2005.
The EPA drafted assessment provided an extensive evaluation on all available information on the health effects and human exposure to PFOA. PFOA is one of 9252 known PFAS. The assessment also compared human blood levels with the estimated PFOA blood levels that are not anticipated to produce or produce minimal toxicity based on data from lab tests.
The Science Advisory Board panel reviewing the EPA’s study agreed that PFOA was likely to be carcinogenic (EWG, 2020). In other words, they knew of PFAS toxicity in 2005 and did nothing. Now, our bodies and communities are poisoned.