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Flame retardants: Industry majors to phase out decabrom

As part of the US government's recently announced plans for tougher regulation of potentially toxic or hazardous chemicals, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA; www.epa.gov) has said it will phase out brominated flame retardants based on DecaBDE (decabrom) by 2013. Leading producers Chemtura (Middlebury, Connecticut / USA; www.chemtura.com) and Albemarle (Baton Rouge, Louisiana / USA; www.albemarle.com) have already announced phase-out plans, with Chemtura saying most applications will be switched to other chemicals by 2012.

According to the EPA, extensive tests have found that the chemical is "highly likely to disrupt normal human development.”

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