Connecticut has become the first state to ban thermal printer paper register receipts that contain the chemical bisphenol A.
The ban will go into effect July 1, 2015, unless the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency enacts a similar ban on thermal paper receipts that contain BPA before then. Connecticut has had a ban on infant formula containers and baby bottles that contain BPA since 2009.
The measure cleared the Connecticut House on June 8 after unanimous passage in the state Senate the day before.
In addition, California has moved one step closer to becoming the ninth state to ban the use of baby bottles and sippy cups for children 3 and under that contain BPA.
The California Senate is now considering AB 1319, which passed the state's Assembly in late May. That bill is scheduled for a hearing June 15 before a combined meeting of the Senate Committee on Health and the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality.
The California bill would prohibit the manufacture, sale or distribution of any bottle, cup or can that contains infant formula, liquids, baby food or beverages for children 3 and younger that has more than 0.1 part per billion of BPA. The ban would go into effect July 1, 2013.
A study issued late last year estimated that as much as 2.5 micrograms of BPA can transfer to the skin from those receipts as well as from paper currency.
That amount, however, is well under the safe limit of BPA for children and adults — which is 50 milligrams per kilogram of body weight per day, according to both the EPA and the European Food Safety Authority.
Steve Hentges, executive director of the polycarbonate/BPA global group of the Washington-based American Chemistry Council, said that at the time the study was released those levels were “extraordinarily low” and “not likely” to cause a health concern.
“The trace levels of BPA claimed to be present in dollar bills are insignificant,” Hentges said of the test results from Analytical Sciences Inc. in Petaluma, Calif., which were done for the Washington Toxics Coalition and the Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families coalition.
Baby bottles containing BPA currently are banned in eight states: New York, Connecticut, Wisconsin, Washington, Maryland, Massachusetts, Vermont and Minnesota; four counties in New York — Albany, Schenectady, Suffolk and Rockland; and in Chicago.
All major baby-bottle manufacturers that sell into the U.S. market said in 2009 they would stop selling baby bottles containing BPA.
In addition, a ban on the sale of polycarbonate baby bottles containing BPA went into effect June 1 in the European Union. Canada has had a ban on BPA bottles for two years and last October declared BPA a toxic substance; the country also is developing regulations to manage the risks from BPA. Also on June 1, Beijing began banning production of BPA-containing baby bottles and will ban the import and sale of such bottles starting Sept. 1.
BPA is used to make PC and epoxy resins. The materials are used to line metal cans and are found in thermal printer paper and some dental composites and sealants. There are also used to make a variety of consumer products.
More than 8 billion pounds of BPA are produced worldwide every year.