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Vt. bill would ban 'forever chemicals' in menstrual products, textiles, turf

If a Senate bill passes as drafted, Vermont would become the first state to ban certain chemicals from new athletic fields of artificial turf.
MiniMoon Photo/Getty Images/iStockphoto
If a Senate bill passes as drafted, Vermont would become the first state to ban certain chemicals from new athletic fields of artificial turf.

Senate lawmakers met a key deadline Friday to advance a bill that bans a suite of chemicals from personal care products, textiles and athletic turf.

The bill includes a phased ban on PFAS in most textiles, including ski jackets — and from artificial turf used on new athletic fields. The manufactured chemicals, often called "forever chemicals," are linked to serious health issues.

More from Vermont Public: The EPA is taking steps to regulate toxic ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water. What does that mean for Vermont?

The bill's list of 14 banned chemicals also includes phthalates.

"We bring these chemicals into our state, we throw the products away, the leachate chemicals contain PFAS from our landfills, and then that gets into our water," said Lauren Hierl of Vermont Conservation Voters. "So really just stopping at the source."

After a unanimous vote Friday advancing the bill out of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, the bill goes next to the Senate floor.

Advocates would like to see House lawmakers add to the list of banned chemicals.

If it goes into law, Vermont would be the first state to ban PFAS and phthalates in menstrual products.

Nationally, advocates have for a long time called for more transparency about what's in products like pads and tampons.

Vermont would also be the first state to ban PFAS in turf playing fields.

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Abagael is Vermont Public's climate and environment reporter, focusing on the energy transition and how the climate crisis is impacting Vermonters — and Vermont’s landscape.

Abagael joined Vermont Public in 2020. Previously, she was the assistant editor at Vermont Sports and Vermont Ski + Ride magazines. She covered dairy and agriculture for The Addison Independent and got her start covering land use, water and the Los Angeles Aqueduct for The Sheet: News, Views & Culture of the Eastern Sierra in Mammoth Lakes, Ca.
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