As Catholics, we actively participate in sustaining God’s creation by caring for our children and their physical environment. Today, children live in an environment vastly different from that of previous generations. Rapid developments in technology, communications and material goods mark our transition into the new millennium. While many of these changes benefit children – in the U.S., for example, children are healthier overall than a few decades ago – they also raise new concerns.
The chemicals used to produce the products that improve our lives may also in some cases harm us. A number of environmental health problems, ranging from lead and pesticide poisoning, to asthma and certain cancers and learning disabilities, are linked to inappropriate or extensive use of chemicals.
Chemicals which make modern day products also can fill our air, reside in our soil and seep into our water. Moreover, the effects upon children of many chemicals (including a mixture of these) have still not been tested for their toxicity. While it is unlikely one can live in a toxic free world, more care and attention must be given to environmental health protection.