Bill requiring building insulation review headed to California governor's desk

By Jeremy Carroll
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 13, 2013 6:36 pm ET
Updated: September 13, 2013 6:42 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, Government & Legislation, Building/construction, Furniture, Materials Suppliers

A bill forcing state officials to review flammability standards for foam insulation materials passed the California Legislature and is expected to be signed by the state's governor.

Assembly Bill 127 requires the state's fire marshal, in consultation with the Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation, to review the flammability standards for building insulation materials. The review includes studying if flammability standards for some insulation materials can only be met with the addition of chemical flame retardants or whether the standards could be met without the chemicals.

The fire marshal is required to propose updated insulation flammability standards by July 1, 2015, according to the bill. Ultimately, the California Building Standards Commission will have the final decision on changing flammability standards.

The bill passed the Assembly 49-26 in May and passed the Senate 29-7 on Sept. 11.

In a statement, the American Chemistry Council's Energy Efficient Foam Coalition said flame retardants in foam insulation serve a vital role in fire safety and protect people and property.

"Foam insulation offers an excellent solution for energy-efficient, high-performance buildings and for California's ambitious energy efficiency goals," the statement said. "It has been used in California homes and buildings for decades, helping solidify California's position as a leader in energy-efficient construction."

The coalition said it looked forward to the study and exploring potential improvements to flammability standards.

The bill followed a 2012 order from Gov. Jerry Brown, which directed the thermal insulation bureau to review and revise the state's furniture flammability standards in an attempt to reduce the use of flame retardants in home furnishings.

"Toxic flame retardants are found in everything from high chairs to couches and a growing body of evidence suggests that these chemicals harm human health and the environment," Brown said in a statement. "We must find better ways to meet fire safety standards by reducing or eliminating — wherever possible — dangerous chemicals."

Given the toxicity concerns surrounding flame retardants, the code should be updated, said Assembly member Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, who authored the bill.

"Current standards, which were developed in the 1970s, force foam insulation manufacturers to rely on flame retardant chemicals," Skinner said in a statement. "AB 127 allows more flexibility in how we ensure fire safety while providing consumers with safer choices."


Comments

Bill requiring building insulation review headed to California governor's desk

By Jeremy Carroll
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 13, 2013 6:36 pm ET
Updated: September 13, 2013 6:42 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Celanese buys conductive polymer supplier

October 21, 2014 4:31 pm ET

Materials firm Celanese Corp. has acquired most of the assets of conductive polymers maker Cool Polymers Inc. for an undisclosed price.    More

Image

BASF targets coffee and automotive connoisseurs with new resin grades

October 21, 2014 2:07 pm ET

BASF SE is using polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), which is normally used to manufacture high-end electronics, in a food consumer packaging product.    More

Image

Plastic particles showing up in Germany's Lake Constance

October 21, 2014 1:16 pm ET

While Fakuma 2014 exhibitors and visitors occupied themselves with topics like molding of micro-sized plastic parts during the show, the presence of...    More

Image

Report: Suspected former Nazi with plastic connection collecting Social Security

October 20, 2014 3:52 pm ET

AKRON, OHIO — A one-time plastics executive in Akron is among dozens of suspected former Nazis who have been collecting U.S. Social Security...    More

Image

Corbion Purac collaboration taking bioplastics into even more uses

October 17, 2014 6:00 am ET

Corbion Purac NV's collaboration with Taiwan-headquartered compounder Supla Co. Ltd. and Taiwan electronics producer Kuender & Co. is paying dividends...    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 million dollar plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our analysts provide insight on business trends, foreign investment, top end markets and plastics processing activity. The report also provides important data on exports, production, employment and value of plastics products manufactured.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events