California Legislators Show they Accept Science by Supporting Bill to Modernize Testing of Hazardous Waste

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Social Compassion for Legislation

SACRAMENTO –Today, AB 733 , authored by Assemblyman Bill Quirk, passed the Assembly Committee on Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials by a unanimous vote of 7-0. Co-sponsored by Social Compassion in Legislation and the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, AB 733 would end the use of massive numbers of fish in hazardous waste tests.

For decades, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control has tested water by putting live fish in waste water. If the fish live, the water is safe. If the fish are killed from the waste water, it is deemed unsafe. Under this bill, the Department of Toxic Substances Control would be tasked with looking into viable alternatives to live-fish water testing, and, if able, putting those alternatives into action.

“We all want clean water, but why should fish be killed to test it? There has to be a better way, and now California is a step closer to finding one,” said Judie Mancuso, Founder and CEO of Social Compassion in Legislation .

“There are several viable alternatives to this live fish test that are used in other states and countries,” noted Kristie Sullivan, MPH, toxicologist and Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine Vice President for Research Policy . “We are proud to co-sponsor this legislation and hopeful we will be able to work with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control to end the test.”

“We shouldn’t be killing animals in a laboratory in order to protect animals in the wild,”   Mancuso added. “This practice is out of date, and the state is doing the right thing by looking to move beyond it.”

AB 733 now reports to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.