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Posted Mon Feb 1 2010: from Chemical & Engineering News:
Fluorochemicals Go Short
Nearly all humans, and a large proportion of wildlife, are contaminated with environmentally persistent long-chain perfluoroalkyl compounds. That revelation, around for a decade now, has brought dramatic change to the fluorochemicals industry. Spurred on by academic researchers and concerns from environmental and consumer advocacy groups, chemical companies have worked with the Environmental Protection Agency to phase out perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and are in the process of phasing out perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). The companies are replacing PFOS, PFOA, and their associated compounds with shorter perfluoroalkyl chain compounds that impart the same functional properties as the longer chain compounds. Although the alternatives are just as persistent, they aren't as bioaccumulative and appear to have a better toxicity profile -- which is still being confirmed by testing -- and are thus considered sound replacements.
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