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Greenpeace Australia action at Olympic site. PVC pipes are replaced for alternative material.

Polyvinyl Chloride

The list of uses for Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is endless because it is one of the most widely used plastics.

It is found in a wide range of consumer products such as packaging,cling film, bottles, credit cards, audio records and imitation leatheras well as construction materials such as window frames, cables, pipes,flooring, wallpaper and window blinds. It is also used by manufacturersfor car interiors and in hospitals as medical disposables.

However, the production of PVC creates and releases one of the most toxic chemicals - dioxin.

PVC products can leak harmful additives during use and disposal,when they are burned or buried. Burning creates and releases moredioxins and compounds containing chlorine, which further contaminatesthe environment.

PVC is difficult to recycle, resulting in much of it ending up inlandfills. Chemicals, such as phthalates are added to PVC to make itsoft and flexible.

Laboratory studies in animals show that some of these chemicals arelinked to cancer and kidney damage and may interfere with thereproductive system and its development.

Recent testing by several governments has also shown that children can ingest hazardous chemicals from PVC toys during use.

Governments and industry are taking action to eliminate PVC. Danishand Swedish governments are restricting PVC use, hundreds ofcommunities worldwide are eliminating PVC in buildings and manycompanies such as Nike, IKEA and The Body Shop have committed toeliminating PVC from their products.

Greenpeace is campaigning to phase out PVC in favour of more environmentally friendly alternatives.

The latest updates

 

Toxic Transformers Briefing

Publication | 26 February, 2010 at 0:00

Toxic Transformers Briefing: The hazards of brominated and chlorinated substances in electrical and electronic equipment.

Guide to Greener Electronics - Apple, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 10:04

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of Apple.

Guide to Greener Electronics - HP, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 10:03

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of HP.

Guide to Greener Electronics - Acer, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 10:03

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of Acer.

Guide to Greener Electronics - Dell, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 10:03

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of Dell.

Guide to Greener Electronics 14th edition

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 0:00

The 14th Guide to Greener Electronics (January 2010) provides an updated 'green' ranking of 18 consumer electronics producers, based on scores for toxic and climate / energy-related policies.

Guide to Greener Electronics - Fujitsu, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 0:00

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of Fujitsu.

Guide to Greener Electronics - LG, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 0:00

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of LG.

Guide to Greener Electronics - Sony Ericsson, January 2010

Publication | 7 January, 2010 at 0:00

The 14th (January 2010) Guide to Greener Electronics assessment of Sony Ericsson.

Greenpeace - New Improved Ranking criteria explained

Publication | 6 January, 2010 at 0:00

The Greenpeace Guide to Greener Electronics has new and improved sets of criteria for assessing consumer electronics companies practices on toxics, recycling and climate / energy policy.

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