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Am I Exposed to 2,4-D?

Throughout our lives, it’s normal to find trace amounts of many chemicals in our bodies and 2,4-D is no exception.

How much 2,4-D could we be exposed to? The most recent research demonstrates that there were no detectable exposures for homeowners or bystanders who walk barelegged or sit in turf grass for an hour, 24 hours after application. Research also looked at commercial properties as well as parks, and reached the same findings.

How do we know? Scientists use a method called biomonitoring to measure levels of exposure people have to various compounds. It involves looking at urine and other fluids to measure how much of a compound might be present. With the advancement of technology, scientists can often measure in the parts per trillion.

What do these numbers mean? Government regulators and academics use a tool – called biomonitoring equivalents – to ensure that the amount of 2,4-D a person could be exposed to is tens-of-thousands-of-times lower than what scientists have tested on laboratory animals. Listen to the video by Dr. Julie Goodman as she talks about how these safety factors are applied.

Using BE [biomonitoring equivalents], scientists can examine biomonitoring results and make determinations on how the levels of the chemicals actually found in humans compare to those levels that would be expected if people were exposed at levels equal to the current safe exposure guidance values set by regulatory agencies.

Daily exposure to a chemical at these guidance values by the human population (including sensitive subgroups) is without appreciable risk of harmful effects during a lifetime.

American Chemistry Council