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Transcript of Flame Retardants
Flame retardants are substances that are applied to fabric, wood, or other material to keep it from catching fire or from the fire spreading.
What are the long term effects?
Some of the long term effects linked to flame retardants are:
lower IQ's and smaller attention spans in babies
more premature births
male infertility/harder for women to conceive
early puberty for young girls
The most common chemicals used are Bromine, Phosphorus, Nitrogen, and Chlorine along with inorganic materials.
PBDE Flame Retardants
This particular type of flame retardant is the one that is mainly responsible for the controversy revolving flame retardants. It is an industrial toxic produced by humans. While most of it was banned from being made in the US, many homes, offices, and other environments still contain it because of its high usage rate.
Californians have the highest PBDE (a common flame retardant) levels in the USA.
There is controversy over whether or not flame retardants are actually helpful or if they just make fires more dangerous.
There are almost 70 different types of flame retardants.
Concerns with Flame Retardants
PERSISTENT: do NOT breakdown into safer chemicals in the environment
LONG-RANGE TRANSPORT: can travel long distances after being released
BIO-ACCUMULATIVE: builds up in people and other animals, highly concentrated at the top of the food chain
TOXIC: harmful for life, often long term effects