PVC Letter, SF Chronicle
Saturday, July 15, 2006
Beth Greer’s attack on vinyl (PVC) was without any basis in scientific fact.
Contrary to her claims — borrowed almost exclusively from activist groups with a political agenda against vinyl — there is not a shred of evidence that vinyl is damaging to human health or the environment.
Her allegation about a European movement against vinyl is patently ridiculous.
In fact, the most rigorous risk assessment ever undertaken by the European Union on plasticizers used in vinyl — conducted over 10 years and released in April — concluded that these widely used plasticizers should not be classified as hazardous and pose no risks to either human health or the environment from their current use.
If Greer is truly concerned about dioxin, she should be seeking a ban on wood-burning fireplaces and on- and off-road engines, since those are the single biggest sources of dioxin emissions in the Bay Area. By comparison, the vinyl sector contributes about 13 grams — less than 1 percent of the total amount of dioxin generated annually in the United States.
Vinyl is one of the most sustainable, flexible and cost-effective materials available. Alternatives are more expensive, less versatile and often pose unknown health or environmental risks.
DR. PATRICK MOORE
(An adviser to government and industry, Moore is a Greenpeace co-founder and chairman and chief scientist of Greenspirit Strategies Ltd. in Vancouver. www.GreenspiritStrategies.com)