The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said the companies that use perfluorooctanoic acid, an ingredient in Teflon, will cut the chemical's use.
PFOA or its related chemicals, used in nonstick cookware, waterproof clothing and food packaging doesn't break down in the environment and has been found in low levels in the blood of some 90 percent of Americans, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday.
The EPA hasn't established safe levels of PFOA exposure, but an independent panel recommended in February that the agency classify PFOA as a "likely" carcinogen, while the EPA develops a final risk assessment of the chemical.
The EPA said in a statement released Thursday that consumer products made with Teflon and other nonstick coatings don't pose a risk to consumers.
The EPA said that the eight companies that use PFOA have agreed to reduce PFOA environmental releases and levels in products by 95 percent by 2010 and to work toward elimination of sources of PFOA exposure by 2015.
Copyright 2006 by United Press International
Explore further: Galaxy's Ring of Fire