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[greenyes] Fw: ALL/INFO: Recycling toxics?!
Forwarded from Annie:

----- Original Message -----
From: ann leonard aleonard(AT)essential.org
To: greenyes-owner(AT)grrn.org
Sent: Thursday, April 10, 2003 5:04 PM
Subject: ALL/INFO: Recycling toxics?!


Dear Recycling Practitioners, Advocates and Allies:

Below is a very important article from Environment Daily (an excellent news
service from Europe) which raises a critical issue about the limitations of
a conventional recycling approach alone.

As you all know, the problems with our materials flow in societies has to
do with both the volume and the toxicity of materials used. Recycling, or
other end of the pipe approaches, are a critical component of addressing
materials flows, but without also including toxics use reduction and other
"upstream" approaches, recycling can end up perpetuating the use of
inappropriate persistent toxic materials, as in the example below.

  ABS plastic is a common hard plastic, eg used in computer housings,
printed circuit board mounts and drain pipes. It is Acrylonitrile Butadiene
Styrene plastic.  Because it is used in electronics it is mixed with flame
retardants.  The brominated ones lead to brominated dioxins when burned in
incinerators or smelters.  Also BFRs are a halogen, and are often referred
to as the "PCBs of the 21st century."

This article argues that toxic plastics can be better recycled than
non-halogenated plastics. I believe it is a stark example of why we need to
include toxics use reduction, clean production and other "upstream"
approaches in our strategic analysis and in our work so that materials are
safe at all stages: production, use, and post-use management.

I welcome hearing others' thoughts on this, especially from recycling
practitioners. How do we ensure that the critical work of promoting
recycling and discard management complements, rather than undermines, work
to get persistent toxics out of production processes and products? Is there
much awareness among the recycling community around the world about the
importance of getting toxics out of use, of cleaning up the materials
stream at all stages?

Cheers,
Annie Leonard
GAIA


 From Environment Daily (Europe)
March 2003 - ABS containing two types of brominated flame retardant
(BFR) has proved to be the material most suited to mechanical recycling,
research has found.

The results have been published in a study titled "Comparison of the
recyclability of flame retarded plastics" in the Journal of Environment,
Science and Technology.

The study measured the compatibility for mechanical recycling of 10
plastics, of which eight contained halogen-free flame retardants. The
study concluded that BFRs such as tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) and
brominated epoxy oligomers (BEO) are "highly suited to recycling due to
their stability."

According to the article, plastics containing BFRs passed all test
criteria and maintained their original properties. They were also able
to retain important properties such as colour and fire rating, while
meeting the stringent environmental requirements of the German Dioxin
decree.

The results will be of interest to OEMs that need to comply with the EU
Directive on Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment by 2006.
Reuse and recycling targets are at least 65% by weight in the
teletronics equipment category.

According to the Brominated Science and Environmental Forum, the
directive is a clear advantage for plastics containing BFRs, since they
offer a high degree of stability during recycling.





--=====================_185300207==.ALT
Content-Type: text/html; charset="us-ascii"

Dear Recycling Practitioners, Advocates and Allies:

Below is a very important article from Environment Daily (an excellent news service from Europe) which raises a critical issue about
the limitations of a conventional recycling approach alone.

As you all know, the problems with our materials flow in societies has to do with both the volume and the toxicity of materials
used. Recycling, or other end of the pipe approaches, are a critical component of addressing materials flows, but without also
including toxics use reduction and other "upstream" approaches, recycling can end up perpetuating the use of inappropriate
persistent toxic materials, as in the example below.

 ABS plastic is a common hard plastic, eg used in computer housings, printed circuit board mounts and drain pipes. It is
Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene plastic.  Because it is used in electronics it is mixed with flame retardants.  The brominated ones
lead to brominated dioxins when burned in incinerators or smelters.  Also BFRs are a halogen, and are often referred to as the "PCBs
of the 21st century."

This article argues that toxic plastics can be better recycled than non-halogenated plastics. I believe it is a stark example of why
we need to include toxics use reduction, clean production and other "upstream" approaches in our strategic analysis and in our work
so that materials are safe at all stages: production, use, and post-use management.

I welcome hearing others' thoughts on this, especially from recycling practitioners. How do we ensure that the critical work of
promoting recycling and discard management complements, rather than undermines, work to get persistent toxics out of production
processes and products? Is there much awareness among the recycling community around the world about the importance of getting
toxics out of use, of cleaning up the materials stream at all stages?

Cheers,
Annie Leonard
GAIA


From Environment Daily (Europe)
March 2003 - ABS containing two types of brominated flame retardant
(BFR) has proved to be the material most suited to mechanical recycling,
research has found.

The results have been published in a study titled "Comparison of the
recyclability of flame retarded plastics" in the Journal of Environment,
Science and Technology.

The study measured the compatibility for mechanical recycling of 10
plastics, of which eight contained halogen-free flame retardants. The
study concluded that BFRs such as tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) and
brominated epoxy oligomers (BEO) are "highly suited to recycling due to
their stability."

According to the article, plastics containing BFRs passed all test
criteria and maintained their original properties. They were also able
to retain important properties such as colour and fire rating, while
meeting the stringent environmental requirements of the German Dioxin
decree.

The results will be of interest to OEMs that need to comply with the EU
Directive on Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment by 2006.
Reuse and recycling targets are at least 65% by weight in the
teletronics equipment category.

According to the Brominated Science and Environmental Forum, the
directive is a clear advantage for plastics containing BFRs, since they
offer a high degree of stability during recycling.





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