Significant reduction of brominated flame retardants emmissions in europe

Significant reduction of brominated flame retardants emmissions in europe

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Develop a process to separate brominated flame retardants from WEEE polymers

Final Report


This final report summarises the practical trials and process design work conducted during a three phase project funded by WRAP to develop a process to separate brominated flame retardants (BFRs) from waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) polymers.
The work shows that the modified Creasolv1 process for extraction of brominated flame retardants from WEEE polymers has potential to be commercially viable in the UK context at a throughput of 10,000te/year. The Creasolv process was originally developed by Fraunhofer IVV in Germany and has been modified further in the course of this project in collaboration with Fraunhofer IVV.
The Creasolv process will remove most BFR types from styrenic WEEE polymers. Work done for this project has shown that styrenic polymers constitute over half of collectable WEEE polymers and that they contain the great majority of the BFRs found in WEEE thermoplastics. It is has not been tested with the newer BFR types such as brominated epoxy oligomers because these are not yet found in significant quantities in real WEEE….Read more Sans titre 2

Environment and Human Health, Inc.’s New Flame-Retardant Report –


Environment and Human Health, Inc. (EHHI), an organization of physicians and public health professionals, is releasing its research report calling for state and federal governments to institute new policies to protect the public from flame-retardant exposures. Flame-retardants are now ubiquitous in our environment. They are found in almost all consumer products and pose health risks to fetuses, infants, children and the human population as a whole.

The report closely examines the health risks that flame-retardants pose to the general population and recommends sweeping policy changes to protect the public. The report examines the history of flame-retardants and demonstrates the enormous scope of the problem, noting that flame-retardants can now be found in the bodies of polar bears and whales, showing how far they have spread.

John Wargo, Ph.D., first author of the report and the Tweedy-Ordway Professor of Environmental Health and Political Science at Yale University, said, “Synthetic flame-retardants can now be found in the tissues of most people in the United States. Many flame-retardants are persistent and bioaccumulate in our bodies. Flame-retardants are not required to undergo health and environmental testing, and they are not required to be labeled on the products that contain them. Because exposures to flame-retardants carry health risks, they should only be used when the risk of fire outweighs the risk from flame-retardant exposures. When risk from fire is high, such as in airplanes, then the use of flame-retardants is warranted; when the risk from fire is low, flame-retardants should not be used.”

The history of flame-retardant use in the United States is a story of substituting one dangerous flame-retardant for another. The country lived through decades when asbestos was used as a fire-retardant. Then when asbestos was proven too dangerous to be used, the country moved over to PCBs, and five decades later, when PCBs were deemed too dangerous for use, the country moved on to chlorinated and brominated flame-retardants… Read more: source: click here

Fire statistics in Great Britain: Number of fire victims has been declining due to strict fire regulations

One of the best documented fire statistics in the world are those of Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales), which started in 1944. Reports of the fire brigades on fire incidents began in 1947 and since became the basis of the current fire statistics in Great Britain. The GB fire statistics cover accidental and deliberate fires, fatalities from fires and non-fatal casualties, as well as the type of fires.

It shows that the long term trend in fire fatalities has been downward and that the main death toll comes from dwelling fires.  The number of fatalities in England in accidental dwelling fires in 2011-12 was 187, 26 (12%) less than in 2010-11. This is 40 per cent lower than ten years ago (310 in 2001-02).

Smokers’ materials (i.e. cigarettes, cigars or pipe tobacco) were the most frequent source of ignition causing accidental dwelling fire fatalities, accounting for over a third of all accidental dwelling fire fatalities in 2011-12. For every 1000 accidental dwelling fires where smokers’ materials were the source of ignition, 31 people were killed in 2011-12. Fatalities from this source have been declining since its peak of 144 in 2001-02.

The most common identified cause of death from a fire incident is being overcome by gas or smoke or toxic fumes. In 2011-12, fire and rescue services reported 380 fire related fatalities of which 130 people died because of this cause, accounting for 34% of all fatalities. A further 74 (19%) fatalities were attributed jointly to both burns and being overcome by gas or smoke, whilst 94 (25%) were due to severe burns alone. The rest is classified under unspecified (14%) or other (8%).

The continuous decrease in fire deaths in Great Britain, and particularly for dwelling fires  since over 20 years is due to the strong regulatory activities on fire safety. The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (latest amendment 2010) set levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture, furnishings and other products containing upholstery. Upholstered furniture meeting these requirements will not be ignited or propagate an initiating fire when exposed to small ignition sources such as cigarettes, open flames (gas burners of varying intensity) and a series of wood cribs as larger ignition sources. The Smoke Detectors Act of 1991 prescribes the use of smoke detectors in new dwellings. Both regulations have initiated the ongoing reduction of fire incidents and thus of fire deaths in Great Britain, although the amount of combustible materials and products in dwellings has been increasing at the same time.

Download pdf document: Here

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Flame Retardants: Design for Environment and End-of-Life – is there a life after WEEE, RoHS and REACH?

By: Dr. Adrian Beard-Clariant GmbH

Flame retardants are a key element of the safety of many products of daily life and in the workplace environment. Many plastics, textiles and natural materials are quite flammable and burn well. In a number of application areas this fire risk has to be reduced by measures like the use of flame retardants – the E&E sector being one of the most prominent areas. However, there are concerns about the environmental and health properties of some flame retardants, in particular brominated systems. The European WEEE and RoHS directives have responded to these concerns and declared the phase out of PBBs (polybrominated biphenyls) and PBDEs (polybrominated diphenylethers) as well demanding the separation of plastics containing brominated flame retardants before further recycling operations. In expectance of these directives and the growing pressure on halogenated flame retardants, the flame retardants market has responded with an increasing demand for non-halogenated flame retardants. Phosphorus and nitrogen based as well as mineral flame retardants have experienced above average growth rates over the last years. Material recycling of flame retarded plastics is usually technically feasible – the major problem is how to obtain a continuous supply of input material which is well defined in its composition. Otherwise, only feedstock recycling or energy recovery are sensible options.

Download two pdf documents: Document 1 –  Document 2




Zero halogen cables meet London Tube challenges


Pinfa: London underground transport poses particular fire safety issues: as the oldest metro system in the world, the tunnels were built small, deep and long, with very few escape exists, and are used daily by millions of people. Railway systems worldwide have strict smoke and fume standards (BS6853 UK, NF 16 101 France, DIN 5510 Germany and TS 45545-2 Europe) and the London tube requirements for low smoke and toxicity are amongst the most stringent in the world. PolyOne’s ECCOH compounds provide LSFOH (low-smoke and fume, zero halogen) fire safety solutions for cables, as well as mechanical performance (mineral oil resistance IRM 903 for 7 days at 100°C, temperature rating from -40°C to +120°C) and have been accepted for installation in the London underground system. PolyOne ECCOH also includes a range conforming to the performance requirements of the nuclear industry, including radiation and chemical resistance. Read more:


Dangerous FR(CBS News)

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