The effect of PVC on health may be very destructive. When processing and shaping PVC resin, due to the production of dangerous gases such as HCL, a mask must be used. In addition, dust masks and goggles should be used in places where there is PVC dust in the environment. Because the contact of PVC dust with the eyes may cause eye irritation and a burning sensation. In this case, you should quickly wash your eyes with water and see a doctor.
In this section, a summary of safety points related to PVC chlorine is given. The method of transporting and storing chlorine PVC is similar to PVC. Of course, the presence of additional chlorine in chlorinated PVC improves the anti-flammability properties of this polymer.
Many studies have been done regarding the effect of HCL on health. In an experiment, it was found that 5 minutes of contact with 30,000 ppm of HCL and 15 minutes of contact with 5,000 ppm of HCL did not have any adverse effects on the health of monkeys. Therefore, the toxicity of the gases resulting from the burning of PVC and chlorinated PVC is considered similar to the burning of other common materials such as wood. Because CO2 and CO gases are produced from the burning of other materials, and only HCL vapors are an additional substance formed from the burning of these polymers, which does not pose much of a health risk.
The effect of PVC on health ، end of life
The term end of life is actually an answer to the question “What happens to the goods after the end of their use?” is . Among the most common events that happen to goods after use, we can mention recycling and reuse, burning and burying. These issues may seem simple at first glance, but considering the geographical and economic limitations, we can understand that finding a practical way to get rid of unusable plastic goods is a very difficult task. The recycling system of traditional materials such as glass, metals and paper, which includes collection, classification and reprocessing, is well known and established.
By reducing the consumption of plastics, it is possible to contribute more to economic and energy savings. For example, by reducing the thickness of plastic bottles, the amount of plastic materials used is significantly reduced. With the popularization of plastic protective bubble sheets, the amount of materials used for packaging has decreased significantly.
Reuse, although it is less fortunate than the two methods, but due to the very good durability of products made of PVC, it can be done from a technical point of view.
The recycling of plastics, including PVC, has always been of interest, and good progress has been made in this field over the past years. In general, plastic waste can be divided into two categories: industrial waste created in production units and downstream industries and waste after product consumption. Due to the ease of collecting industrial wastes and their non-contamination with other non-plastic materials, their recycling is usually economical and therefore about 99% of such PVC wastes are recycled. Another noteworthy point is that most of the products made of PVC are considered to be durable products and basically, the waste of PVC consumed during the last year is very low compared to other plastics such as polyethylene, polypropylene and polyethylene terephthalate. have been .
Today, one of the ways to destroy waste, including plastic waste, is to burn them at very high temperatures. In this method, significant amounts of energy are recovered and for this reason, the process of converting waste into energy is released, and it is usually completely burned and leaves very little ash.
Of course, there are concerns in this field because if the conditions of the incinerators are not suitable, dangerous side products such as aromatic hydrocarbons and dioxins are produced due to the burning of PVC, which has an adverse effect on health. In order to prevent this issue, today the incinerators have strict standards and therefore the production of the mentioned dangerous gases has probably decreased a lot.
Although this method should be the last method of disposing of PVC and other plastics waste, it is one of the most common methods in most countries, especially North America. This issue is mainly due to its economy and very low cost. Elite in Europe and Japan, due to the lack of soil resources, there are stricter rules in this field, and the costs of this method are higher in the mentioned areas than in North America.
The most important points that the critics of this method point to are the pollution of water sources by softeners, heavy metal compounds and other compounds resulting from the decomposition of PVC.