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EPA Petition Could Spell End of Fluoridation

06/12/16

PRESS RELEASE

EPA Petition Could Spell End of Fluoridation

The New Zealand Government's proposal to take away legal responsibility for water fluoridation from local councils and give it to the District Health Boards could prove to be an exercise in futility.

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is now under legal threat from a petition demanding that the EPA apply their standard risk assessment rules to water fluoridation. Applying these rules would result in the EPA enacting a Regulation to prohibit the addition of fluoridation chemicals to the drinking water. If the EPA do not act within 90 days, the legal team at Fluoride Action Network (FAN) USA will take court action.

Fluoride Action Network have provided the EPA with a detailed assessment of all studies on fluoride and brain effects that have been completed since the 2006 National Research Council’s Fluorides in Drinking Water. That review states, “it is apparent that fluorides have the ability to interfere with the functions of the brain and the body by direct and indirect means” (page 187) and recommended further research.

FAN’s assessment provides unequivocal proof that current allowable levels of fluoride are not protective for all members of the population from damage to the brain. Those particularly vulnerable are bottle-fed babies, children, the elderly and people with kidney or thyroid problems.

USA health authorities lowered the maximum level for fluoridation last year to a level lower than New Zealand’s. The US authorities are obviously concerned about fluoride’s harm to the brain, as they are currently funding three major studies to determine at what dose harm to the brain occurs. They are:

• The National Toxicology Program undertaking a study on animals to evaluate potential neurobehavioural effects from fluoride exposure during development.

• The National Institute of Health funding a Canadian study which looks at a world-renowned Mexican longitudinal study of the potential impact of population-wide levels of fluoride exposure on neurodevelopment.

• The National Institute of Health funding York University to lead the largest study to date investigating whether early life exposure to low level fluoride affects the developing brain.

Spokesperson for Fluoride Free NZ (FFNZ) Mary Byrne says: “It is backward and reckless for the New Zealand Government to embark on new legislation to further entrench fluoridation and extend it to the other half of New Zealand that has never been fluoridated.”

FFNZ is asking the NZ Health Select Committee members to review the details of the petition and to recommend that the new legislation be shelved. “Fluoridation belongs to a by-gone era and far too much is now known about adverse health effects for any further consideration on fluoridation to be seriously considered.” says Ms. Byrne.

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