Safe Fields Alliance and Synthetic Turf Council response to Status Report

The Safe Fields Alliance (“SFA”), a coalition dedicated to educating stakeholders around the safety of synthetic turf fields using recycled rubber, and the Synthetic Turf Council (“STC”), a non-profit trade association dedicated to serving as a resource for trustworthy information about synthetic turf, issued the following statement regarding the December 30th, 2016 Environmental Protection Agency Status Report on the Federal Research Action Plan on artificial turf:

“We understand that last Friday’s announcement marks incremental progress by the EPA on its Federal Research Action Plan. However, we cannot overstate the pressing need for the Agency to share clear and concise findings as soon as possible in 2017 in order to provide answers and eliminate uncertainty for parents and policymakers.

Based on the more than 90 scientific studies that have already looked into the safety of synthetic turf fields and other surfaces with recycled rubber infill, we believe the answers are already out there. Just last week, after sampling 100 synthetic turf fields, the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) concluded, “Playing sports on synthetic turf fields with rubber granulate is safe.” We are confident that the EPA will also ultimately reach the same conclusion: that there are no links to any negative health effects from recycled rubber.

The industry is fully committed to transparency and safety, and has worked to collaborate with the EPA on this effort. In addition to our collaboration, the industry has simultaneously taken its own proactive steps by cooperating to ensure all synthetic turf and playground infills meet new ASTM toy standards for heavy metals.

While we agree that the EPA should not sacrifice thoroughness for expediency, after nearly a year of study, the cloud of uncertainty is hurting businesses as well as jobs. The science is evident, and it is time for the EPA and other regulatory agencies to bring clarity to the situation.”