Minimizing exposure to harmful flame retardant chemicals in waste foams and plastics

January 29, 2018

New Rochelle, NY, Jan. 29, 2018 -- Continued research and new policies and practices to ensure proper use and disposal of foam and plastic products that contain potentially harmful flame retardant chemicals are needed to minimize health risks from environmental exposure to humans and animals. A new two-part article detailing responsible, proactive strategies for managing end-of-life foams and plastics is published in Environmental Engineering Science, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The articles are available free on the Environmental Engineering Science website until March 1, 2018.

A team of international researchers led by Donald Lucas, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (California), coauthored the articles entitled "Methods of Responsibly Managing End-of-Life Foams and Plastics Containing Flame Retardants: Part I and "...Part II." The first article focuses on the main challenges involved in handling ubiquitous waste products that contain halogenated flame retardants and the future research needed to determine and compare the costs and benefits of diverting materials containing these chemicals from landfills or altering current landfill disposal practices to reduce their release into the environment. An essential part of the ongoing research is to identify the risk to human health and the environment associated with both of these alternatives.

In Part II, Dr. Lucas and colleagues examine various technologies for managing waste products that contain halogenated flame retardants, including various physical and chemical processes for recycling and disposal. The authors summarized input from countries and regions that have comprehensive and accepted protocols in place for the responsible collection, pretreatment, processing, and management of these waste products to inform the future practices of countries that do not. "The important work by Lucas and colleagues summarizes state of the art management practices for an important group of potential contaminants and will be very helpful as less developed regions across the globe grapple with how best to address similar problems," says Domenico Grasso, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Environmental Engineering Science and Professor of Engineering and Policy, University of Delaware, Newark.
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About the Journal

Environmental Engineering Science, the official journal of the Association of Environmental Engineering & Science Professors, is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published monthly online with open access options. Publishing state-of-the-art studies of innovative solutions to problems in air, water, and land contamination and waste disposal, the Journal features applications of environmental engineering and scientific discoveries, policy issues, environmental economics, and sustainable development including climate change, complex and adaptive systems, contaminant fate and transport, environmental risk assessment and management, green technologies, industrial ecology, environmental policy, and energy and the environment. Tables of content and a sample issue may be viewed on the Environmental Engineering Science website.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Industrial Biotechnology, Sustainability: The Journal of Record, and Environmental Justice. Its biotechnology trade magazine, GEN (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News), was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 80 journals, newsmagazines, and books is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.

About the Association

The Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP) comprises faculty members in academic programs throughout the world who provide education in the sciences and technologies of environmental protection. The mission of AEESP is to assist its members in the development and dissemination of knowledge in environmental engineering and science. AEESP seeks to strengthen and advance the discipline of environmental science and engineering by providing leadership, promoting cooperation amongst academics and others within and outside the discipline, and serving as a liaison between its membership and other professional societies, governmental agencies, industry and nonprofit organizations.

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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