May 20, 2010 1:11 PM by Melissa Canone
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Environmental Protection Agency has
directed oil giant BP to use a less toxic form of chemical
dispersants to break up the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Two Obama administration officials confirmed the order Thursday.
Some lawmakers and environmental groups have criticized use of the
dispersants, which shoot chemicals thousands of feet beneath the
sea. The chemicals break apart the oil and keep it from reaching
Safety data documents show that one of the chief agents being
used, called Corexit 9500, is identified as a "moderate" human
health hazard that can cause eye, skin or respiratory irritation
with prolonged exposure.
A spokeswoman for the EPA declined immediate comment.
12 hours ago