Seventh GenerationAt first blush, one’s enthusiasm for the Million Baby Crawl would seem to depend largely upon three things: 1) enthusiasm for babies, real and animated; 2) a penchant for baby-related puns (we’re going to rattle Congress!); and 3) interest in frittering away time on the interwebs.
But that does a disservice to the intention behind this effort, which is to rally support for reform of the nation’s chemical policies. You don’t have to have babies — or even wuv them! — to want the feds to better regulate the toxics that find their way into our homes and bodies.
The facts are out there, and they are not cuddly-wuddly:
- Since 1976, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has required safety testing on only 200 of the more than 80,000 chemicals on the market.
- According to the Environmental Working Group, a new chemical is synthesized every 2.6 seconds and the EPA approves two a day without adequate evaluation, particularly of the risks of low-dose, long-term exposure.
- Studies conducted by EWG have detected up to 287 industrial chemicals in umbilical cord blood that nourishes unborn children.
Scary stuff, and you can read much more about it, as well as the push for reform, on the Environmental Working Group site.
So the Crawl has commenced. A creative spin on the traditional online petition, it finds legendary green-products manufacturer Seventh Generation partnering with consumer-rights advocate Erin Brockovich, eco-pediatrician Alan Greene, and a coalition called Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families. Visitors can “create a crawler” (again, you don’t have to have a baby, or ever have had a baby, or ever have thought about having a baby, to participate) or “find a crawler” by zip code or name. The goal, say organizers, is to deliver (ha! deliver!) the signatures to Congress in January — so far they’re at 12,160 and counting.