Regarding your Jan. 1 editorial ("PN presents agenda for new millennium," Page 6), I am guessing that you have included recycling efforts as a politically correct way of including environmental issues.
May I suggest that the plastics industry can regard the totality of environmental and public health issues as safety issues. For example, the industry must take care of disposing of waste materials in a safe manner. The industry must also take care of selecting materials which will not cause health and safety issues when the parts must be disposed of or recycled.
The industry must take care to select materials and design products that will not cause any harm to the end users. Recycling efforts are simply a way to increase the usable lifespan of materials, diverting them from possibly unsafe disposal, and also reducing the need for making new raw materials, which employ some unsafe processes and require more energy.
Secondly, I will also suggest that the priority be changed from last place to second place. If there is any doubt that this change needs to be made, then please consider this: You hold up our mothers´ judgment as a good standard for business practices. Is the industry also willing to accept their standards when dealing with health and safety issues? Not yet.
The industry is not ready to act proactively to determine the safest use of phthalates, for example, and our mothers would definitely be taking a different stand.
Marc de Niverville