The Voluntary Emissions Control Action Programme (Vecap) has released a report claiming that emissions of main brominated flame retardants have fallen over the last five years.
Vecap is run by the European Flame Retardant Association (EFRA), which is a sector group of the European Chemical Industry Council (CEFIC). The programme is aimed at reducing the potential for emissions of flame retardants by promoting environmental best practice.
The association this week released its European annual progress report for 2012, which suggests that emissions of Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) and Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) fell over the 2008-2012 period. Emissions of Decabromodiphenyl ether (Deca-BDE) increased only slightly.
The group says its members have continued to reduce emissions despite the financial downturn, demonstrating its commitment to good environmental practices.
According to the report, potential emissions of HBCD to land were reduced to 1g/t in 2012, the lowest since the beginning of the programme and a 99% drop since 2008.
Potential emissions of HBCD to air dropped from 36 g/t to 16 g/t in 2012, representing a 56% reduction compared to the previous year. Vecap attributed the change to its members switching to low-dust granular material. Potential emissions to water remained at 2 g/t.
Both potential emissions to air and water were low; 1g/t potential emissions to air and 0.2 g/t for potential emissions to water, says Vecap.
Decabromodiphenyl ether (Deca-BDE)
The only emissions to show a significant increase were Deca-BDE to land, which doubled from 31 g/t in 2011 to 60 g/t in 2012. Vecaps says the rise is, however, from second line users, who are not yet familiar with the best practices.
Potential emissions to air remained low at 12 g/t, down from 25 g/t in 2008 and only slightly above the 11 g/t recorded in 2011. Potential emissions to waste were 25 g/t.