A moment to celebrate: Senate passes bill to reform outdated chemical safety law

Karin Rives

The United States just took a huge step toward bringing our woefully outdated chemical safety law into the 21st century.

The U.S. Senate – finally – brought the Lautenberg Act to the floor by unanimous consent and passed it without objection last night. The legislation, which will help protect Americans from toxic chemicals in everyday products, now needs to be reconciled with a bill the House has passed before, being signed into law by President Obama.

The vote came thanks to the engagement by “an ever-enlarging circle of Senators and stakeholders, who saw the potential for a public health and environmental breakthrough, and who had the courage to work toward a compromise bill even in the most partisan of climates,” notes Richard Denison, Environmental Defense Fund’s lead senior scientist, in a blog post.

It took political risk-taking, a willingness to seek common ground and compromise – and countless days, weeks and months of “plain old hard work,” he writes.

Learn more about the Senate vote, and what it all means, from Richard’s report.