Maine DEP Ruling On Chemical Won't Be Fast

Sep 30, 2014

PORTLAND, Maine — Maine Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Patricia Aho will likely take most of the allotted 120 days to rule on new regulations for a chemical used in household products.

A proposed change would elevate four phthalates from "high concern" to "priority chemical" status under state rules. Manufacturers would need to report the use of the chemicals in products sold in the state.

Aho has until Jan. 27 to make a ruling. A DEP spokesman says Aho will likely take all or most of that time because the issue is complex.

Phthalates are used in products like raincoats, vinyl flooring and personal care items. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says some types of phthalates have affected reproductive systems in lab animals. They are sometimes called "plasticizers."