Bisphenol A, or BPA, used in the manufacture of a wide range of consumer and industrial products including food-can liners, hard polycarbonate plastics, epoxy paints and coatings, has been shown to cause reproductive and developmental effects in animal studies, an EPA release said Tuesday.
More than 1 million pounds of BPA are released into the environment every year, the EPA said.
"A number of concerns have been raised about the potential human health and environmental effects of BPA," said Steve Owens, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.
"The data collected under the testing EPA is considering would help EPA better understand and address the potential environmental impacts of BPA."
In January 2010 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced it would further examine potential human health effects and reduce exposure to BPA in the food supply, which represents the greatest source of exposure to people.
The EPA is working with the FDA on research under way to better determine and evaluate the potential health consequences of BPA exposures, the agency's release said.