House and Senate lawmakers agreed to permanently ban three types of phthalates from children’s toys and to outlaw three other phthalates from products pending an extensive study, The Washington Post reports. The ban would take effect in six months.
In addition, the legislation would phase in a near-ban on lead in products designed for children 12 and younger, The Chicago Tribune reports.
Manufacturers and importers will need to perform strict tests on toys and other nursery products before they can be sold – some companies will be bale to conduct the tests themselves.
California recently prohibited the use of phthalates in children’s products. Earlier this year, Wal-Mart, Toys R Us and Babies R Us told their suppliers that they will no longer carry products containing the chemicals.
The chemical industry waged a battle, led by Exxon Mobil, which manufacturers diisononyl phthalate, or DINP, the phthalate most frequently found in toys, to defeat it.
President Bush opposes the ban but it’s unclear whether or not he will veto the measure.