Almost all tests and studies are performed on animals before ever hitting human beings.
People, as you might imagine, have mixed feelings when it comes to this topic. We want to make sure that things are safe on humans, but sometimes it comes at the sacrifice of other animals. The Environmental Protection Agency has decided that it is going to stop conducting or funding any studies on animals by 2035.
The EPA is the first federal agency to put a deadline on phasing out animal research. People have been complaining for years that animal research is unreliable, misleading, and costing taxpayers a lot of money.
Other people worry that with the elimination of animal testing, dangerous chemicals are going to be free in the environment and end up in consumer products. Animal testing is used to determine the safety of chemicals and products.
Many companies are pushing for nonanimal testing procedures. They feel as though many chemicals can be tested through computer programs and “organ-on-chip” technology. They believe with all the scientific advancements in the world, this kind of testing can be done without the use of animals. This method can evaluate chemicals faster, more accurately, and at a much lower cost. The EPA plans to reduce requests for and funding of animal studies by 30 percent by 2025. The rest will be phased out 10 years later.
Animals used in toxicology reports annually range from 20,000 to more than 100,000. This movement will be able to save their lives and force companies to determine alternative ways of testing chemicals. The major fear, however, in the elimination of animal studies is that a lot of power will be given to chemical companies. Experts will not have the ability to evaluate how chemicals are being tested.
This announcement by the EPA does give agencies plenty of time to establish nonanimal alternatives in preparation for the phasing out of animal research. With the technology that we have in place today, and will continue to add to over the next few decades, chemical testing should be able to be completed without the use of animals in the very near future.