Amazon Removes Toxic School Supplies from Marketplace

The Attorney General of Washington State Bob Ferguson announced that Amazon has entered into a nationwide legally binding agreement to monitor and not sell kids’ school supplies and jewelry containing illegal levels of lead and cadmium.  The Office of the Attorney General’s environmental protection division and the state Department of Ecology launched an investigation testing products targeted to children such as backpacks, pencil pouches, lunch boxes, book covers, bracelets, and necklaces.  According to Kelly Wood, an assistant attorney general in the environmental protection unit, all or nearly all of the products tested as part of the investigation were manufactured in China.  The AG investigation found some school supplies with more than 80 times the legal limit of lead.  At least 15,188 purchases nationwide of products with illegal lead or cadmium levels were made through Amazon.  When Amazon learned of the results of the investigation, it contacted the purchasers recommending the disposal of the toxic items and provided more than $200,000 in refunds.  In addition, Amazon will pay the Attorney General’s Office $700,000 to fund future environmental protection efforts, including future investigations into toxic children’s products.

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