News Analysis

New Flame Retardant for Polystyrene-Too Much Like the Old?

 

Dow Global Technologies has announced a new flame retardant for use in polystyrene insulation. Dow hopes the new chemical, a brominated flame-retardant (BFR), will replace HBCD (hexabromocyclododecane), a BFR whose use has come under fire from the European Union for environmental and health reasons (see “Flame Retardant Used in Polystyrene to be Banned by EU,” EBN Feb. 2011). In a March 2011 press release, Dow touts the new BFR as a “more sustainable” replacement for HBCD in extruded polystyrene (XPS) and expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam insulation. Watchdog groups have responded to the news with skepticism.

Published April 5, 2011 Permalink