In the Page 1, Sept. 2 article [``Rutgers' recycling center gets the ax''] that reported the closing of the research center at Rutgers, reference was made to the diminishing interest in recycling as a reason for the closing. I believe there is another issue that more accurately depicts the waning interest in the projects Rutgers has pursued in the past.
The recycling movement has changed from university test projects to profit businesses around the world. Focus, the one thing that makes business work, has spelled the demise of Rutgers. We in the recycling industry have grown successful businesses by focusing on specific products.
The close of the center probably will, in the long run, be the best for the recycling industry. Now the people who have developed these formulas will join forces with focused groups and move on to the next step, implementation.
Let us not mourn the passing of the Rutgers center but look at it as the next step in a successful transition from research to profitable business.
Regarding the Page 12, Sept. 16 Viewpoint, ``All things vinyl and more lead balloons'':
The effort to establish a red herring on domestic production of rigid vinyl building products by the Consumer Products Safety Commission by implying their use and the potential of lead poisoning is misdirected and unsubstantiated.
Lead stabilizers, despite being less costly than organic stabilizers, are not used for vinyl siding, vinyl windows and other exterior vinyl products because their use creates a possibility of marbleized discoloration when exposed in industrial atmospheres.
Such atmospheres may at times contain hydrogen sulfide-sewer gas-fumes, and exposure of lead-stabilized vinyl products may cause a lead sulfide surface discoloration.
We discovered this potential contamination in the late 1950s when evaluating foreign PVC window material formulations and decided then to never use lead stabilizers for these applications.
It is safe to say the domestic rigid vinyl industry has from the outset forsaken the use of cost-saving lead stabilizers to provide higher-quality products. Window blinds are subject to exposure and these products place a high premium on color stability.
The industry should be complimented for eschewing the use of lead stabilizers rather than being indicted by assumption and by a suggestive questionnaire.
In further evidence of the vinyl industry's strict policing of its products, all pipe raw materials are prohibited from using lead stabilizers by the National Sanitation Foundation, and these materials are regularly inspected.
I trust these comments will help allay and shortstop any further harassment of this industry by the Consumer Products Safety Commission.
Editor's Note: The writer is former director of market development for BFGoodrich Chemical Co.