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  1. #1
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    Default European Union Chemical Bans

    The European Union ordered the phaseout within 3 to 5 years of the chemicals in PVC, styrofoams, and the intumescent coatings sprayed over spray foams, they voted to phase out the Phthalates in PVC/CPVC,
    REACH
    The European Union will phase out the use of three phthalates, a flame retardant, a synthetic musk, and a compound used in epoxy resins and adhesives. The move, announced Feb. 17 by the European Commission, marks the first time the EU has banned substances under its Registration, Evaluation, Authorization & Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) program.

    The regulation also bans the flame retardant hexabromocyclododecane because the compound is persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic. Another affected substance is 5-tert-butyl-2,4,6-trinito-m-xylene, also known as musk xylene, which the EU characterizes as very persistent and very bioaccumulative.

    The sixth chemical banned is 4,4'-diaminodiphenylmethane, used in some epoxy resins and adhesives and as an intermediate in the manufacture of other substances. The EU classifies this compound as a substance which should be regarded as carcinogenic to humans.¹
    Our EPA has this to say about the use of styrofoam insulations:

    EPA
    The main use of HBCD is as a flame retardant in expanded polystyrene foam (EPS) and extruded polystyrene foam (XPS) (Weil and Levchik, 2009). EPS and XPS are used primarily for thermal insulation boards in the building and construction industry (Morose, 2006). HBCD is used because it is highly effective at low concentrations; EPS boards contain approximately 0.5% HBCD by weight in the final product (Morose, 2006).

    HBCD is of international concern because of its PBT properties. HBCD was added to ECHA’s list of Substances of Very High Concern (SVHCs) on October 28, 2008 (ECHA, 2008). HBCD is under consideration for listing under the POPs Protocol to the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution, as technical review has concluded that HBCD is persistent, bioaccumulative, can cause adverse effects to humans or the environment, and has the potential to be transported long distances within the meaning of the Protocol (UNECE, 2010). Under the Stockholm Convention for Persistent Organic Pollutants, the POPs Review Committee decided in October 2009 that Annex D screening criteria have been met for HBCD; further determinations have not been made (UNEP, 2010).

    HBCD is persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic, especially to aquatic organisms. HBCD biomagnifies in food chains. Given its presence in the environment including wildlife, and the high hazard for HBCD to algae and aquatic invertebrates, EPA has a concern for the potential risk to these aquatic organisms.

    EPA has presented evidence which strongly suggests there is potential for exposure to the general population from HBCD in the environment, as well as exposure to HBCD from products and dust in the home and workplace. HBCD shows toxicity in repeated-dose (28- and 90-day feeding studies) tests. There may be some human health hazard concern based on thyroid effects and indications of developmental and transient neurobehavioral effects. These health effects combined with potential exposures suggests some concern for a potential risk to the general population from HBCD is warranted. Greater concern is warranted for workers who manufacture the chemical and produce products that contain it, given available expose information.

    Availability of substitutes for HBCD uses is an unresolved issue, especially for EPS and XPS building foam board applications, where other, more suitable flame retardants may not be readily available.²
    HBCDs are also the fireproofing in the intumescent coatings applied over spray foams, will our EPA follow suit and ban these chemical products like they did with asbestos and lead? When we installed asbestos and lead we didn't know that it was bad, everybody now knows that PVC and styrofoam are bad and should be banned. Will the chemical/plastics industries come up with acceptable substitutes to these toxic chemical products?


    ¹ http://pubs.acs.org/cen/news/89/i08/8908news2.html
    ² http://www.epa.gov/oppt/existingchem...2010-08-09.pdf
    “It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.” - Alexis de Tocqueville

  2. #2
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    will our EPA follow suit and ban these chemical products like they did with asbestos and lead?
    Good for the EU if it sticks, but here after years of crying about the need to deregulate and git Big Gov off the backs of business to create jobs and other panacea like reactions, I wouldn't be holding my breath... unless of course you downwind from a refinery or something. Remember that last election was all about Change 2.0.
    “I find the curiosity of our men with respect to this animal is pretty much satisfied.”
    ~ Meriwether Lewis

  3. #3
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Just some deranged thoughts upon reading these post.

    Everyone wants change until they get it. Ignorance is bliss only as long as you are ignorant.

    I am about 95* retired these days. Just do a little arch. design work for old clients and friends.

    Looking back, I guess I'm lucky to have made it this far. I can remember as a kid, playing with mercury that my Dad used in his work . We worked with and handle lead without a second thought. Washed my hands in Keytone as if it were water. I could go on and on but I have bored you enough. By the way, I'm not justifying my actions. I wouldn't do it now.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    slaughter, same as that

    as a kid at school we played with mercury with our bare hands

    then cleaned them with some substance that is probably now illegal

    EDIT, looks like i need to do some in depth reading of EU regs
    Last edited by Tom Bainbridge; 03-14-2011 at 03:07 PM.
    Limey Carpenter

  5. #5
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Ever try the Luke Skywalker thing under the power lines at night with the 4' florescent tubes?

    None of those tubes ever made it home, we ended up wearing all the dust inside the tubes in our hair after smashing the tubes together.

    Nothing ever happened to us, I'm just fine. Doctor says my lesions will grow out before I'm 50.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Oh goodie! Imagine the growth industry built on removing installed XPS, EPS.

    In a recent episode of Holmes on Homes, a mandatory asbestos removal specialist charged $690 a piece to remove two short ducts wrapped in asbestos paper.
    "The fatal flaw of all revolutionaries is that they know how to tear things down but don’t have a f**king clue about how to build anything." Jim Goad

  7. #7
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Gary:

    What gets me as that when we old guys installed asbestos and painted lead and oil based paint we didn't know it was toxic, but now we are all told how toxic PVC and styrofoam are yet we daily see builders here using it, there is not a day that goes by without getting an E-mail from some group demanding the banning of either PVC or styrofoam, here is one I opened today.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Dick Seibert; 03-17-2011 at 01:12 PM.
    “It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.” - Alexis de Tocqueville

  8. #8
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    What is going to happen to ICF's? Back in the 80's they told us it was the wave of the future.

    What's left to build with? We can't use lumber because we can't harvest old trees and the new trees can't be used in engineered lumber because of outgassing.

    Do you need a permit to build a teepee and huddle under a bunch of buffalo robes?

    Does adobe give off radon or any other toxic gases?

    Dick, you thought you needed a law degree to build houses, well it appears you also need a degree in chemistry.
    It is a simple matter of being patient. I do patience very well, except for the waiting part. That's the one aspect of patience that still bites me.

    I'm not saying I'm Superman. What I'm saying is no one has ever seen me and Superman in the same room together.

    ParkWest Homes LLC
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Park:

    The Greenies are tightening the noose around the builders' necks, the misleading thing here is that anyone coming to these fora would think Green meant energy efficiency, but the greens I'm seeing are more about saving the earth and energy efficiency is pretty far down their list of priorities, and I would agree, filling the landfills and oceans with toxic waste that's going to last millions of years is much worse for the environment than consuming oil.
    “It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.” - Alexis de Tocqueville

  10. #10
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Quote Originally Posted by Dick Seibert View Post
    Park:

    The Greenies are tightening the noose around the builders' necks...
    yeah! if it warnt for the guvmint I could poison whoever I want however I want. Let the buyer beware.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Yeah, some Greenies want to save people from poison plastics and sealants, other Greenies want to poison people with plastics and sealants to save oil, some Greenies want to save the birds and turtles, others want to kill them to save oil, it's hard to keep all the Greenies' agenda straight.
    “It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.” - Alexis de Tocqueville

  12. #12
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Remember when houses could breathe and then we were told to seal them up tight... and now we have all these problems with mold, outgassing, carbon monoxide build-up etc.?

    Is it more about control than anything having to do with the environment??
    It is a simple matter of being patient. I do patience very well, except for the waiting part. That's the one aspect of patience that still bites me.

    I'm not saying I'm Superman. What I'm saying is no one has ever seen me and Superman in the same room together.

    ParkWest Homes LLC
    Working Man Online Store
    Living Healthy

  13. #13
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Quote Originally Posted by Dick Seibert View Post
    ...some Greenies want to save the birds and turtles, others want to kill them to save oil...
    Which Greenies want to kill birds and turtles?

  14. #14
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles
    Which Greenies want to kill birds and turtles?
    Those who want to cover the windy areas with windmills and the deserts with solar panels, two different groups, both sue to stop those who put energy savings above wildlife, although the Sierra Club with hundreds of lawsuits on file seems to be against all activity that destroys wildlife, their original mission was to block dams in the Sierras to protect the fish, they said the future of energy was nuclear, then reversed course and became anti-nuclear. The Greenies should really all get together and prioritize, but the big ones make a lot of money in settlement of their legal actions. Greenpeace is more active internationally and seems more interested in banning plastics and protecting the oceans, the CHE&J is mostly anti-plastic, but I think over the long haul they will have the most effect since they are brainwashing school children with cartoon characters like Sam Suds condemning the "poison plastics", a couple of years ago they were picketing Home Depot, Target, Wal Mart and others for selling plastics, now I see they are concentrating on getting plastics out of schools.
    “It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.” - Alexis de Tocqueville

  15. #15
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    Default Re: European Union Chemical Bans

    Quote Originally Posted by Dick Seibert View Post
    The Greenies should really all get together and prioritize...
    we're having a meeting Tuesday if you want to come!

    FWIW I don't think there will likely ever be one list of priorities.

    In the first place there's the apples vs. oranges aspects. When you're looking at what you value in a house you're building, there's no scientific basis on which to decide between "energy/comfort" issues and "health of occupants" issues and "reducing direct harm to natural ecosystems" issues...each is its own value and there can be multiple valid means by which to attempt to compare them, there's a level of rationality that can be brought to bear but never a 100% clear choice.

    Second, many of the tactics to reduce damage to the planet depend on a number of assumptions. Your "Sierra Club" example (no dams, we'll use nuclear; no nuclear, we'll use solar/wind; don't site solar/wind to cause significant harm to endangered ecosystems) all assume we need industrial-society-levels of energy, and probably not much less than we use now, if not more...which assumes growing human population...and so on.
    Some Greenies believe it's acceptable to push pretty hard to prevent population growth, through more or less draconian means. Many others assume it will top out relatively soon, which is what demographers have been saying for a decade or two, which probably means no intrusive 'one child' type policies might be needed. I've heard estimates lately as low as 9 billion total max population, much lower than the 15 or even 25 that people talked about a couple of decades ago. Again, this is a pretty big issue and one's assumptions about the future will make a huge difference in what you think needs to be done.
    That doesn't even address the branch of deep greens who think the human population should be sub-1 billion and that it's unethical for humans to permit the current level of damage to ecosystems. Making a broad generalization, the vast majority of environmentalists are motivated to keep our little spaceship from malfunctioning as OUR support system as the primary interest. In other words it's about keeping humanity going, the fact is we're overusing the planet and will need to change how we do things or lots of people will suffer.
    But there are lots of people who also or instead think the other life on earth should not be harmed out of moral reasons alone and darn the consequences for people.

    Anyway, to sum up even if we had accurate life-cycle-analysis information at our fingertips, you'd still have to decide what's important to you and how things are going to unfold in the future, and even then not everyone would agree.

    PS I think you're a greenie if you don't like PVC and styrofoam!

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