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Pressure Treated Wood May Cause Cancer

Over 90 percent of all outdoor wooden structures in the United States are made with arsenic-treated lumber. In nationwide tests, dangerous levels of arsenic were found on the surface of "pressure treated" wood purchased at several home improvement centers. Arsenic is a key ingredient in a pesticide called Chromated Copper Arsenate, or CCA that is the main ingredient used to "pressure treat" wood. Arsenic is poisonous and a known carcinogen. In fact, Arsenic is on the EPA list of chemicals known without question to cause cancer in humans.

Exposure to the amounts of arsenic found in pressure treated wood may cause: lung, bladder, skin, kidney and prostate cancer, cancer in the nasal passages, hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and possibly death.

Every other use of arsenic as a pesticide is banned by the EPA. A special federal exemption was given to the wood industry, and millions of pounds of CCA per year are injected into wood that is then sold to families all across the country. CCA is not only poisonous to pests, but also to children.

The Environmental Protection Agency declared that use of chromated copper arsenate, CCA, must end by December 2003.

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