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Jennifer Sass, Senior Scientist, Washington, D.C.

Jennifer Sass

I grew up in the Canadian prairies where I learned to love open spaces, wild places, big skies, long summer nights, cozy cold winters, and the comfort of good friends. I came to the US as a post-doctoral student of toxicology and environmental health. After about a dozen successful years as a bench scientist conducting basic medical research, I wanted to transition into policy work. I joined NRDC in 2001 to work towards strengthening the regulation of toxic chemicals. When not in the office I like to hike, bike, white water kayak, and walk my dog.

Recent Posts

Bees are stressed out! Scientists say climate change is part of the problem.

Posted July 9, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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Both wild bees and honeybees are being pummeled by stressors that can act alone or together to pack a powerful and even deadly punch. Now a study in the journal Science by an international team of fourteen scientific experts has...continued

Highly hazardous pesticide, chlorpyrifos, doesn't look so bad when I wear my "EPA-Dow AgroSciences" rosy colored safety goggles

Posted April 30, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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When the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its revised human health risk assessment (RHHRA) of the pesticide chlorpyrifos for public comment, it threw children's health under the Agrochemical bus. Unfortunately, it is routine for EPA to rely heavily, and often...continued

Good news! CPSC proposes to ban hazardous phthalate chemicals in toys and child care products

Posted April 28, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) has proposed banning some of the most toxic phthalates (pronounced ˈtha-lāt) from toys and child care products, and NRDC submitted comments supporting CPSC's proposal, but also asking them to go further. Phthalates are a...continued

Neonicotinoid Pesticides Still Bad for Bees - two studies in Nature journal add to the evidence

Posted April 22, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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Two scientific articles published in the prestigious journal Nature add to the growing mountain of scientific evidence linking neonicotinoid pesticides (neonics) with bee declines (see for example review article by Pisa et al 2015). The study by Kessler et al...continued

The Government Pollinator Health Task Force: After a year of waiting, will their report protect bees, or Big Ag?

Posted April 8, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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The White House Pollinator Task Force, appointed June 2014 by a Memorandum from President Obama to tackle the crisis of bees, butterflies and other pollinators, is set to issue its recommendations sometime next month - about half a year after...continued

Methyl Bromide pesticide - long banned for indoor home uses -suspected of severely poisoning a family after vacation home is fumigated

Posted April 6, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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There is some really troubling news about a family poisoned by a pesticide while on vacation at a luxury resort in the US Virgin Islands. Based on news reports and the investigation by EPA Region 2, a family of four...continued

Glyphosate herbicide linked to cancer - IARC World Health Organization assessment

Posted March 27, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) - the cancer evaluation arm of the World Health Organization - convened a meeting of 17 scientific experts from 11 countries to assess whether certain pesticides, including glyphosate, caused cancer in humans...continued

California moves forward to limit toxic perchlorate contamination - EPA still overdue

Posted February 27, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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California is taking a big leap forward on the path to making the tap water of its residents safer than ever by setting a new public health goal (PHG) for perchlorate - a toxic water contaminant - of 1 part...continued

No, Cancer is Not Mostly Bad Luck - The Role of Environmental Factors

Posted February 5, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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No, cancer is NOT mostly bad luck. We've set the record straight in Science magazine (Ashford et al, 6 February 2015) after it published an article and accompanying editorial so full of misstatements that scientists around the world, including myself,...continued

NRDC and other Green leaders urge U.S. president to ban bee-killing insecticides - EPA moving too slowly

Posted February 4, 2015 by Jennifer Sass

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In a letter to the White House, CEOs of leading environmental groups representing millions of Americans urged President Obama to take strong and swift action against neonicotinoid and other systemic insecticides that are devastating honey bee and wild bee populations,...continued

Home Depot and BJ's Wholesale Club take steps to limit or eliminate bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides in their nursery plants

Posted December 5, 2014 by Jennifer Sass

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Bees and gardeners win! Public pressure successfully pushed Home Depot to start requiring labelling of its nursery plants that are treated with bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides. This means that we can read the label, and avoid buying these plants. That will...continued

NRDC and hundreds of thousands of our members tell USDA and EPA to stand up for pollinators!

Posted November 19, 2014 by Jennifer Sass

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The USDA and EPA each hosted a “listening session” on pollinator health recently, where the public — beekeepers, farmers, pesticide manufacturing companies, environmental advocates like me, other public interest groups, etc — all get to stand up and tell the...continued

13th Report on Carcinogens adds four new chemicals to the cancer list - Fracking just got worse for your health

Posted October 6, 2014 by Jennifer Sass

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The National Toxicology Program’s Report on Carcinogens  – the nation’s authoritative public list of substances “known” or “reasonably anticipated” to cause cancer in humans – added four chemicals, making a total of 243 substances in its 13th Report : 1-bromopropane...continued

House Republications Push Bill to Weaken Pesticide Regulations - H.R.5447

Posted September 20, 2014 by Jennifer Sass

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House Republicans and their industrial agrochemical allies are trying to hijack concern about saving bees to promote a bill that would needlessly weaken pesticide regulation.  The bill (H.R. 5447), introduced by Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA), would allow highly toxic pesticides...continued

Neonicotinoid pesticides - bad for bees, and may be bad for people too

Posted September 17, 2014 by Jennifer Sass

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While public attention has recently focused on the threat to honey bees and bumble bees from neonicotinoid (neonic) pesticides, there is growing evidence that another species may be a risk from these pervasive chemicals—humans. Many scientists now say that exposure...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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