WASHINGTON, DC – The National Pollution Prevention Roundtable announced today that the application period for companies to be recognized as a 2012 leader for replacing hazardous chemicals, processes or products with safer alternatives is approaching September 30. “Over 100 environmental officials at the state and local level have joined forces to create the Safer Chemistry Challenge Program” said Jeff Burke, executive director of the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable (NPPR). “This is a collaborative effort between the private and public sectors which is designed to challenge, assist, and recognize businesses for reducing their use of chemicals of concern in the products they manufacture or consume, keeping them out of our air, water, land and food.” These include chemicals that have hazardous properties, concentrate in the food chain, do not readily degrade in the environment, and are a threat to workers, consumers, or public health.
Under the program, companies are asked to reduce the use of hazardous chemicals currently being used in their processes or products by applying one or more of the following approaches: using green chemistry practices, transitioning to cleaner and more sustainable production techniques, or working with suppliers to find safer raw materials that can degrade into innocuous substances after use. “Making products safer and preventing pollution is not only better for our environment and health, but it is also good for the bottom line,” said Cindy McComas, project manager for the Safer Chemistry Challenge Program. “Many companies have discovered that using less hazardous ingredients can open up new market opportunities, increase production efficiency, and lower costs as a result of greater efficiencies and improved environmental compliance.”
Companies that participate in the Safer Chemistry Challenge Program (SCCP) will be acknowledged for their efforts through web site exposure, press releases, success stories, and recognition events. Members of the program will be provided access to SCCP resources, especially state and regional technical assistance staff with knowledge in manufacturing processes and product chemistries.
“The National Pollution Prevention Roundtable has been hosting a series of safer chemistry webinars to help companies move to safer chemicals, products and processes” said Burke. He added that the group will be sponsoring a green chemistry conference November 13-14 in Chicago, followed by a GreenScreen training session on November 15. The conference and training will focus on ways to identify hazardous ingredients in consumer and commercial products and whether an alternative to a hazardous chemical is better.
For information on how to become a member of the Safer Chemistry Challenge Program and details on the green chemistry conference, visit the NPPR’s website at www.p2.org/challenge.