We all have our favorite summer pastimes—activities we look forward to every year as the days begin to grow longer and warmer. Whether summer means days spent at the beach or pool, overnight camping trips, back-to-back sporting events or afternoons biking around the neighborhood, one thing that helps to make our summers both fun and safe is bisphenol-A (BPA).
BPA is a building block chemical used to make a plastic known as polycarbonate, which has properties that make many of the items we use for everyday summer fun safe, durable and reliable. Polycarbonate makes those summer toys strong and very durable, while also being lightweight. And, its shatter-resistance and clarity (it’s clear or see-through) make it all the more useful.
Take a look at our Summer Fun with BPA list to see how BPA is used in your favorite summer items:
- Sunglasses – Whether your goal is looking cool or keeping your eyes protected from the bright sun, sunglasses are a go-to summer accessory. Polycarbonate is used in sunglass lenses because it is highly shatter-resistant and extremely light-weight. This allows for thinner, lighter lenses that are more comfortable to wear.
- Swimming goggles – For snorkeling in the ocean or swimming laps in the pool, swimming goggles are essential for the water-lovers among us. Polycarbonate gives swimming goggles their clear, shatter resistant and lightweight properties.
- Camping gear – Anyone who’s been camping knows that reliable equipment can make or break your trip. Polycarbonate camping equipment, such as shatter-resistant camping plates, cutlery, cooking tools and water bottles, is durable and lightweight making it easier to carry long distances. Whether you’re enjoying dinner over an open fire, or cooling off after a long hike, your equipment will be strong and stand up to the elements with polycarbonate.
- Sports equipment – For families who love sports, being active takes place all summer long. Strong, shatter-resistant polycarbonate is used to make helmets, sports safety goggles and visors for baseball, softball, football, lacrosse, street hockey and many other sports to help protect you and your children from injuries on the field or on the court.
- Beach toys – Building the tallest and most extravagant sand castle on the beach is always hard work, but beach toys made with polycarbonate are up to the task! Polycarbonate can be used in everything from sand scoops and buckets to toy dump trucks and sand-castle molds, and avoids cracking and prevents breakage—keeping you on the beach and sand-castle construction up and running.
- Bike helmets – Whether you enjoy long, leisurely rides or love watching your children explore the neighborhood on their bikes, don’t forget that safety comes first! Always wear a bike helmet, and know that polycarbonate plastic is what’s used to make helmets strong and protective.
- Food containers – Barbeques, cookouts and picnics are quintessential summer events, and food is always the star of the show. Food storage containers made with polycarbonate come in handy. They are lightweight for easy portability, strong enough to withstand everyday use and cleaning, and shatter resistant—critical for those poolside parties or backyard family gatherings.
Not only do products made with polycarbonate help us get the most out of summer, but you should also know that the use of BPA to make polycarbonate is safe for us. BPA is one of the most widely studied chemicals in use today, and government agencies around the world, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), and the World Health Organization (WHO) have all agreed: BPA is safe in consumer products. In fact, last year, the FDA released the CLARITY Core Study, the largest study ever conducted on BPA. Once again, it reaffirmed that BPA is unlikely to cause health effects at the very low levels to which people are exposed.
So, get out and enjoy summer with products made from polycarbonate, and learn more about BPA and its uses at www.FactsAboutBPA.org