Letter Highlights Negative Impact of Styrofoam on Public Health, Environment

Washington – Today, Rep. Earl Blumenauer and 114 other members of the House of Representatives delivered a letter to Speaker John Boehner registering serious concerns with the use of polystyrene (“Styrofoam”) serveware in the House cafeterias. The use of Styrofoam comes as Republican leadership abandons the overall Green the Capitol programs at a ten-year cost to taxpayers of $50 million in lost savings.

“Over 20 years ago, McDonalds and other fast food restaurants replaced polystyrene foam with recyclable and paperboard containers,” the letter reads. “More than 100 cities have also chosen to ban polystyrene foam for health and environmental reasons. Adopting the same standard is the least we can do. Over time, exposure to the styrene that leaches into food and liquids can cause extensive health effects, including fatigue, headaches, hearing loss, central nervous system disfunction, difficulty sleeping, as well as low platelet and hemoglobin values and chromosomal abnormalities. The International Agency for Research on Cancer classified styrene as a potential human carcinogen.”

The full text of the letter can be viewed here.

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