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Main Title Regulating toxic substances : a philosophy of science and the law /
Author Cranor, Carl F.
Publisher Oxford University Press,
Year Published 1993
OCLC Number 25130677
ISBN 019507436X; 9780195074369; 0195113780; 9780195113785
Subjects Hazardous substances--Law and legislation--United States. ; Chemicals--Law and legislation--United States. ; Industrial safety--Law and legislation--United States. ; Occupational Health. ; Chemical Industry. ; Chemische stoffen. ; Verontreiniging. ; Filosofische aspecten. ; Umweltrecht.--(DE-588)4061643-5 ; USA.--(DE-588)4078704-7
Internet Access
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Table of contents
Table of contents
Publisher description
Library Call Number Additional Info Location Last
EJEM  KF3958.C73 1993 OCSPP Chemical Library/Washington,DC 06/11/1993
ERAM  KF3958.C73 1993 Region 9 Library/San Francisco,CA 10/04/2002
ESAM  KF3958.C73 1993 Region 10 Library/Seattle,WA 02/19/1993
Collation xix, 252 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Includes bibliographical references (pages 231-241) and index.
Contents Notes
Introduction: Assessing Toxic Substances Through a Glass Darkly -- 1. The Scientific Background. Predicting Risks from Animal Bioassays. Background. Regulatory Science and Policy Choices. Normative Implications of the Scientific Uncertainties in Risk Assessment. Problems in the Statistics of Human Epidemiological Studies and Animal Bioassays. Discovering Risks. Practical Evidence-Gathering Problems. Theoretical Difficulties. Traditional Practices in Interpreting Epidemiological Studies. An Alternative to Traditional Practices. Clean Hands Science, Dirty Hands Public Policy. Professional Ethics. Public Policy Issues -- 2. Scientific Evidence in the Tort Law. Institutional Background. The Challenge to Present Evidentiary Procedures. Legal Issues. Arguments for the Scientific Standards Test. Arguments Against Competitor Views. Black's Proposal. A Common Conceptual Framework for Evaluating Scientific and Legal Burdens of Proof. An Alternative View. The proliferation of chemical substances in commerce poses significant scientific and philosophical problems. The scientific challenge is to develop data, methodologies and techniques for identifying and assessing toxic substances before they cause harm to human beings or the environment. The philosophical problem is to determine how much scientific information we should demand for this task consistent with the pursuit of other social goals. In this book, Carl Cranor utilizes material from ethics, philosophy of law, epidemiology, tort law, regulatory law, and risk assessment to argue that the evidentiary standards for science used in the law to control toxics ought to be evaluated with the purposes of the law in mind. Demanding too much for this purpose will slow the evaluation and lead to an excess of toxic substances left unidentified and unassessed, thus leaving the public at risk. Demanding too little may impose other costs. Analyzing this tension philosophically, Cranor argues for an appropriate balance between these social concerns. Although the use of somewhat less stringent evidentiary standards for expert testimony in tort law cases and the use of expedited procedures in the regulatory field might in some cases lead to mistakes of overcompensation or overregulation, the overall social costs would be less than the alternatives. Justice requires that we tolerate the chance of such errors and that we resist the temptation to demand the most science intensive evaluation of each substance in order to protect individuals better from mistakes of undercompensation and underregulation. The role of science in the control of toxic substances is an important public philosophical issue, yet until now has received little discussion by philosophers. Regulating Toxic Substances addresses this subject in a way that speaks both to a well-informed public and to experts in several disciplines, including philosophy, risk assessment, environmental and tort law, environmental studies, and public health policy.