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Spring Cleaning and the Dangers Lurking Under The Sink

April 3, 2012

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Take a look at what's lurking under the sink before starting the spring cleaning season. That message comes from 21 groups in Maryland and surrounding states, calling for disclosure of dangerous chemicals in common cleaning products.

Deborah Goldberg, managing attorney with Earthjustice, says ingredients should be available on a multi-state database, since many of the ingredients are not on the labels.

"It's not only to the people who are down on their hands and knees scrubbing, it's for the little kids who are crawling around in this stuff and pushing their noses against the window, and so forth."

According to the EPA, cleaning products are among the top five most common poison exposure risks for children.

Goldberg says states can take the lead in requiring reporting, and the burden can be eased somewhat by collaborating with a database being used by several states for disclosure of a variety of toxics in many products. It's called the Interstate Chemicals Clearinghouse, or IC2.

"Companies provide the data on a real-time basis to the IC2, so that the IC2 can utilize it and display it in a way that will be helpful to the consumers."

She says studies have linked cleaning chemicals to asthma, nerve damage and hormonal disruption.

The Interstate Chemicals Clearinghouse is at

Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - MD