Approximately 200 playgrounds in Kansas use shredded rubber from old tires for artificial surfaces. As more facilities switch to recycled tire products, environmental groups and health advocates are concerned with the lack of studies by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the prolonged health effects of recycled tire scraps.
And Kansas lawmakers are asking questions as well.
“I’m concerned … soccer players and others are clearly developing cancer, and our kids are playing on these (turfs) on the playgrounds,” Rep. Annie Kuether, D-Topeka, said last week.
Kuether asked the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) to provide information on health concerns for recycled rubber products. Gary Mason, deputy secretary for the environment at KDHE, said he doesn’t have sufficient data to answer.
(Read more: Great Bend Post)