Bisphenol A, also called BPA, can be found in numerous products used daily by people. The list consists of the liner inside food cans, inside water pipes, possibly contaminating water, baby bottles, dental fillings, sunglasses, water coolers, tableware, food storage containers, CDs, electrical equipment and much more. Lab animals exposed to Bisphenol A experienced obesity, diabetes, and early onset of puberty and breast cancer.
On September 29, 2009 EPA announced that it’s evaluating BPA, and another five chemicals, for action plan development
Always no, it has existed for a while, but only slowly and surely worked its way into almost everything. While Bisphenol A was first synthesized in 1891, the first evidence of its estrogenicity came from experiments in the 1930’s feeding BPA to ovariectomised rats (Dodds and Lawson 1936, 1938). Another compound invented during that era, diethylstilbestrol, turned out to be more powerful as an estrogen, so bisphenol A was shelved… until polymer chemists discovered that it could be polymerized to form polycarbonate plastic. Unfortunately, the ester bond that links BPA monomers to one another to form a polymer is not stable and hence the polymer decays with time, releasing BPA into materials with which it comes into contact, for example food or water. With an annual production of 2–3 million metric tonnes, it is an important monomer in the production of polycarbonate.
Global production of bisphenol A in 2003 was estimated to be over 2 million metric tonnes. In the U.S., it is manufactured by Bayer MaterialScience, Dow Chemical Company, SABIC Innovative Plastics (formerly GE Plastics), Hexion Specialty Chemicals, and Sunoco Chemicals. In 2004, these companies produced just over 1 million t of bisphenol A, up from just 7,260 t in 1991. In 2003, annual U.S. consumption was 856,000 t, 72% of which was used to make polycarbonate plastic and 21% going into epoxy resins.
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