Towards a Policy to Eliminate Perchloroethylene in Dry Cleaning

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Transcript Towards a Policy to Eliminate Perchloroethylene in Dry Cleaning

Replacing PERC with safer alternatives in dry cleaning

Steve Whittaker

Local Hazardous Waste Management Program Public Health – Seattle & King County

Outline

• • • • • • History of dry cleaning Dry cleaning solvents The problem with PERC An industry in crisis What is LHWMP doing?

What else could be done?

Evolution of Dry Cleaning Solvents

Pre 1960s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s

• • • • • • •

Kerosene Turpentine Naptha Benzene Stoddard Carbon tet.

TCE PERC introduced PERC use peaks California: PERC phase out

• • • • • •

Liquid CO 2 High-flash hydrocarbons Siloxane Glycol ethers 1-bp Water!

Acetal (Solvon K4)

Nothing cleans like PERC

• • • • • • • •

PERC (tetrachloroethylene) – 69%

Hydrocarbons – 21% Solvon K4 Liquid CO 2 Liquid silicone Wet cleaning (water) Glycol ethers 1-bromopropane (!) Chemical Formula: C 2 Cl 4 Source: LHWMP, 2011

PERC = DNAPL

Adapted from: Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College. Adapted from: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

Redmond, WA Groundwater 2006-2010

Redmond, WA - 2011

259 x 0.57 = 148 ppm

Redmond, WA - 2011

> 1000 ppm PERC (maxed out!)

<1

Age of dry cleaning machines

Expected lifespan ?

Source: LHWMP, 2011

• • • • ~36,000 current dry cleaning facilities in the U.S.

~75% contaminated with PERC Median cleanup cost: $230,000 Range: $29,000 - $2,000,000 Source: SCRD Drycleaner Site Profiles database, April 29, 2014

King County, WA:

~200 dry cleaners

~140 using PERC

~50 dry cleaners on Ecology’s Confirmed & Suspected Contaminated Sites List

Troy Laundry Seattle Cleanup Alternatives: 1—$11,327,000 2—$10,260,000 3—$16,822,000

PERC Harms People!

• • • 2014 EPA review (verified by NAS): – likely to be carcinogenic to humans – toxic to the CNS, kidney, liver, immune system, and hematologic system. – adverse effects on embryonic development and reproduction. Grandjean & Landrigan (2014): – PERC is a developmental neurotoxicant Meta-Analysis of Dry-Cleaning-Worker Studies: – increased risk of bladder cancer in dry cleaners Guyton et al. (2014). Environ Health Perspect; DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307359

Grandjean & Landrigan (2014). The Lancet Neurology, 13(3), 330-338. Vlaanderen et al. (2014). Environ Health Perspect; DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307055

PERC Kills Fish!

LC 50 = 5 mg/L

Juvenile rainbow trout LC 50 : WA Dangerous Waste @ 100 mg/L WA Extremely Hazardous Waste @ 10 mg/L Source: EPA ECOTOX database

A PERCfect Storm

• • • • • • • Cultural and language barriers Lack of knowledge of health effects Incorrect information from vendors Little interaction with OSHA Confusion about waste management Changing regulatory requirements Economically-challenged industry

What is LHWMP doing?

• • • • • • Technical assistance & EnviroStars certification Research into alternatives Interagency Resource for Achieving Cooperation (IRAC): education/outreach “Mega vouchers” to replace equipment • • Three $20K awards in 2013 Four $15K awards in 2014 Substantial Improvement Reimbursements: $500 - $2500 Regular vouchers - up to $500 for 50% of costs

What else could be done?

• • Goals: – Reduce exposure/health disparities – Minimize impacts on struggling businesses Multi-agency public/private strategy: – Incentivize conversion from PERC – Private and public financial incentives – Regulatory flexibility – Culturally appropriate technical guidance – Rigorous safer alternatives assessment

www.lhwmp.org/home/Health/drycleaners.aspx

Acknowledgements

• LHWMP staff: – Alice Chapman – Trevor Fernandes – Ryan Kellogg – Debra Oliver – Sharon Schoenfeld-Cohen – Laurel Tomchick – Linda van Hooser • LHWMP interns: - Chantrelle Johanson - Cody Cullison - Jessie Taylor • City of Redmond: - Amanda Balzer

Greenwashing?

No more 5-star EnviroStar PERC users

“It is very frustrating to see PERC dry cleaners promoting their 5 star EnviroStar status, it confuses customers into thinking PERC is environmentally friendly… I am frustrated that I paid a premium to build a "true" PERC free business and there is no support to promote our efforts.”