Flame retardants in lawmakers’ crosshairs

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Debate is intensifying at the Vermont Statehouse over legislation that would ban a certain chemical flame retardant from furniture, cases around computers and televisions and other household goods.

The ban on a brominated flame retardant is being backed by the Vermont Public Interest Research Group and Professional Firefighters of Vermont, among others. It has already passed the Senate and is now in the House.

Supporters of the ban say flame retardants can cause a range of negative health effects among firefighters and members of the general public.

Chemical industry groups say the issue hasn’t been studied enough and are calling the legislation flawed.

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