EU panel bans use of CCA wood


Published: Friday, January 17, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 16, 2003 at 10:33 p.m.
The European Commission has adopted a directive banning the use of arsenic to treat wood for consumer applications, the commission announced in a statement this week.
The directive applies to the European Union's 15 member countries and goes into effect on June 30, 2004. Use of arsenic-treated lumber will continue to be permitted in certain industrial and professional uses in European counties, such as bridges and buildings, where structural integrity is vital and wood risks can be properly managed, the commission said.
"I am pleased to see the adoption of this directive, which will bring significant benefits to the protection of the health of consumers as well as to the environment," Erkki Liikanen, the European Commissioner for Enterprise, said.
The action follows a risk-assessment conducted recently by the commission that found "the use of arsenic in these situations identified a number of risks considered unacceptable."
In February 2002, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a similar move banning arsenic-based wood preservatives from residential markets. The U.S. phase-out goes into effect Jan. 1, 2004.
Greg Bruno can be reached at 374-5026 or greg.bruno@gvillesun.com.

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