Friday, May 31, 2013

The Great Styrofoam Boycott

Styrofoam is not only bad for the environment, but it's bad for you. And it's not actually called Styrofoam that is a name trademarked by our friends at Dow Chemical, the ones who brought us such environmental and health wonders as Agent Orange, napalm, silicone breast implants, and DBCP (a pesticide known to cause human sterility). So we should call it polystyrene which is the technical name for it.
Polystyrene is hazardous to human health. It contains the neurotoxins styrene and benzene, both of which are classified by the EPA and NTP as "known carcinogens" (as opposed to the lesser level "suspected carcinogens" or how about, "not carcinogens"? There's a novel concept). There is growing evidence that these cancer causing toxins can leach into food that's acidic, warm, alcoholic or oily and then into the environment after exposure to rain and other weather. If this is true, it means that it's critical that you don't microwave food in polystyrene or put hot food into polystyrene containers. Out of an abundance of caution, you shouldn't eat from polystyrene at all.


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