EPA seeks alternate flame retardant for PS building insulation

By Jeremy Carroll
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 24, 2013 2:36 pm ET
Updated: September 24, 2013 2:38 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Materials, Public Policy, Sustainability, Materials Suppliers

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a draft rule looking for safer alternatives to the flame retardant chemical hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) in polystyrene building insulation.

The report was developed with input from stakeholders from business, government, academia and environmental organizations, EPA said. The report said there are only two viable flame retardant alternatives to HBCD for use in expanded and extruded PS foam insulation under current manufacturing processes.

EPA is looking at alternatives to HBCD because the chemical has “persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic characteristics,” the agency said.

EPA points to one particular alternative, a butadiene styrene brominated copolymer, that is anticipated to be safer than HBCD and is currently in commercial production in the United States.

“Due to its large size, lack of low molecular weight components, and un-reactive functional groups, human health and ecotoxicity hazard for this copolymer are measured or predicted to be low,” the report said. “Its long-term behavior in the environment is not currently known. Chemical suppliers have commercialized this copolymer, and polystyrene manufacturers are testing the copolymer in their products to ensure that the polystyrene will meet all performance standards.”

The other alternative suggested is a tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA)-bis brominated ether derivative.

“While EPA continues to support much needed reform of the Toxics Substances Control Act (TSCA), EPA is taking steps now to address the public’s concern with certain flame retardant chemicals, including making information available to companies to help them make decisions on safer chemicals,” said Jim Jones, EPA’s assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention in a statement. “The conclusions in this report are enabling companies who choose to move away from HBCD to do so with confidence that the potential for unintended consequences is minimized.”

The public comment period is open until Nov. 22.


Comments

EPA seeks alternate flame retardant for PS building insulation

By Jeremy Carroll
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 24, 2013 2:36 pm ET
Updated: September 24, 2013 2:38 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

China's Shide Group, BASF unveil 'revolutionary' all-plastic window profile

April 23, 2014 9:10 pm ET

SHANGHAI — The PVC window profile market in Asia is expected to increase four-fold by 2025, and Chinese building products maker Dalian Shide...    More

Worker dies in fall at Formosa Texas plant

April 23, 2014 4:04 pm ET

A subcontractor died April 22 after falling 25 feet during routine cleaning operations at a Formosa Plastics Corp. USA facility in Point Comfort,...    More

Image

Milliken expanding SC plant for additional PP clarifying agent capacity

April 23, 2014 3:42 pm ET

American chemical company Milliken & Co. has announced plans for a major expansion in capacity for its Millad NX8000 clarifying agent for...    More

Clariant says Asia holds the key to growth

April 23, 2014 3:52 pm ET

Clariant AG is based in Switzerland, but its eyes are firmly focused further east.    More

Image

Unilever puts Dove brand on a MuCell diet

April 23, 2014 1:57 pm ET

New technology employed by Unilever NV in the manufacture of bottles for its Dove Body Wash range of products could end up saving the brand owner up t...    More

Market Reports

Market Data Book - Rankings & Lists

A one-stop download of Plastic News' exclusive annual lists and processor rankings containing essential data including sales, employees, end markets, materials and more.
EXCLUSIVE EXCEL FEATURE: full mailing address details for available plant locations.

Learn more

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report provides analysis and discussions of economic and political conditions, market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies. In addition, there are reviews of 25 leading thermoformers in the packaging segment, assessing their growth initiatives and performance metrics over 10 years.

Learn more

Mold Making and Tooling Review and Outlook 2014 North America

This report provides in-depth analysis of the mold and toolmaking market for North America, including discussions of trends, opportunities, threats, the latest developments in production and labor and equipment trends impacting moldmakers.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

May 6, 2014 - May 8, 2014Plastics in Medical Devices 2014

May 12, 2014 - May 12, 2014Plastics News Brazil Pharma Summit

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

February 3, 2015 - February 7, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events