Is rock wool “toxic”?

Rockwool/Roxul, Inc. insists that its air emissions are “safe” because its processes, and predicted operational releases, fall within the EPA’s permissible limits for such emissions. Now it attempts to claim those emissions are not toxic.  They are using chemicals and extreme heat to melt rock and turn it into a cotton candy like product.  Using only the EPA’s regulatory data, the rock wool manufacturing process is – by regulatory definition:

toxic to humans, animals, and plants

The EPA regulates a variety of chemicals under the Toxic Substances Control Act, 15 USC §1601.  It also must comply with a number of laws requiring classification and disclosure of its processes. 40 CFR Part 372. Within that law there is a section entitled the Toxic Chemical Release Reporting Community Right To Know.  Part D requires the reporting of specific chemicals that the EPA considers toxic, to which the statute applies for each TRI-listed chemical it manufactures, processes or otherwise uses in quantities above the reporting threshold. §372.65

These chemicals are tracked using a specific designated Chemical Abstract Service Register number (CAS).  Included among those chemicals are Ammonia (CAS No.7664-41-7), Formaldehyde (CAS No. 50-00-0), Methanol (CAS No.67-56-1), and Phenol (CAS No.108-95-2).  Companies using toxic chemicals are required to file a Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) report on a regular basis. Although the Rockwool facility in Jefferson County is not even built yet, its “sister” facility in Byhalia, Mississippi is in operation.  A review of its publicly available TRI reports from the Mississippi facility, shows that it must report and has reported the use of each of the above listed toxic chemicals in its operation and manufacture process for rockwool.

In other words, rock wool is produced via a toxic chemical process, i.e., ToxicRockwool.

 

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