Toxic Flame Retardants

How You Can Help

Seven Easy Steps to Reduce Exposure to Toxic Flame Retardants

"Time is of the essence. We didn't know before, but now we do and it's not an issue of pointing fingers or accusing anybody. Now that we know the consequences, we need to immediately change. It's time to find ways to prevent such chemicals from entering the environment in the first place, to find alternatives, and to anticipate problems before they occur. We cannot wait to find a cure for dangerous products after they are in the environment and in us." -Jean-Michel Cousteau

  1. Support Legislation That Ensures A Healthy Environment Safe From Toxic Flame Retardants.
    • Put an end to toxic flammability requirements
    • Ban the use of DECA PBDE flame resistant chemicals
    • End the use of untested chemicals in the environment and in consumer products
  2. Check Labels Before Purchasing Clothing And Household Items.
    • Avoid labels with these words: Technical Bulletin 117 (TB 117)
    • Look for labels with 100% organic (green) materials: wood, cotton, wool, hemp, and natural latex
  3. Take An Inventory and Reduce or Replace Household Items With TB117 Labeling Such As:
    • Furniture cushions and pillows
    • Bedding: mattresses, comforters, and mattress pads
    • Drapes, curtains
    • Floor carpets, rugs, and padding
    • Family clothing
  4. Use High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) Filters To Reduce Household Dust
    • In your vacuum cleaner and with HEPA Air Purifiers
  5. Talk To Your Family Physician And Veterinarian About Options For Testing And Learning About Your Own Body Burden Load For Toxic Substances.
    • Body-Burden testing for toxic flame-retardants is expensive and not readily accessible.
    • If you want body-burden tests for toxic flame retardants to become available for concerned people YOU CAN:
      Contact The Department of Toxic Substances Control:
  6. TALK To Your Family and Friends
    • Caution others to avoid contact with toxic PBDEs
    • Work together to ensure better health protection for all living species on earth
  7. Support The Work of Ocean Futures Society And Green Science Policy:

Work Cited:

  • California, Technical Bulletin 117, TB 117, State of California department of consumer affairs bureau of home furnishings and thermal insulation,, March 2000.
  • Lorber, M., Exposure of Americans to polybrominated diphenyl ethers. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol 2008, 18, (1), 2-19.
  • Hale, R. C.; La Guardia, M. J.; Harvey, E.; Mainor, T. M., Potential role of fire retardant-treated polyurethane foam as a source of brominated diphenyl ethers to the US environment. Chemosphere 2002, 46, (5), 729-35.
  • Zota, A. R.; Rudel, R. A.; Morello-Frosch, R. A.; Brody, J. G., Elevated house dust and serum concentrations of PBDEs in California: unintended consequences of furniture flammability standards? Environ Sci Technol 2008, 42, (21), 8158-64.
  • Lunder, S., Jacob, A., Fire retardants in toddlers and their mothers. Environmental Working Groups 2008.
  • LeMasters, G. K.; Genaidy, A. M.; Succop, P.; Deddens, J.; Sobeih, T.; Barriera-Viruet, H.; Dunning, K.; Lockey, J., Cancer risk among firefighters: a review and meta-analysis of 32 studies. J Occup Environ Med 2006, 48, (11), 1189-202.