More bans proposed

30 October 2002

THE EUROPEAN Commission has proposed that the chemicals nonylphenol and nonylphenol ethoxylate should be banned, either as a substance or in preparations of 0.1 and 1%, respectively, when used for leather processing and some other industrial uses. Brussels said it had acted because the chemical can cause health and environmental problems; it is used in the production of resins, plastics, dyes and stabilisers in the polymer industry. The bans would cover the use of these chemicals for leather and textile processing, except where there is no release into wastewater and where the chemical is 'fully bound in the polymer matrix (finishing agents, textile printing, dyestuffs)' and for manufacturing systems with special treatment where 'the process water is pre-treated to remove the organic fraction completely prior to biological waste water treatment.'

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