Thursday, April 29, 2010

Hastily Composed VOC chemistry update

One axis of dilema in building-- does the chemistry of the products we use to assemble and attach our buildings together always in tension with other things such as durability, efficiency, tightness, etc.
This afternoon, I've spent a little time pulling together some resources on what resources we have now, and who's really pushing on the boundaries.
1.  Standard MSDS sheet:
We check it out, and scan its pages.  It's mostly not terribly helpful.  In other words, if you're looking for information related to acute exposure to specific high risk chemicals, and maybe some vague VOC content, then MSDS sheets will be awesome!   As a document for green building research, they answer few questions.
But, by law, they must indicate any regulated chemicals into the MSDS sheet, but not much more than that.   So, in the least, you could look up those chemicals in other databases and learn so much about the niceties of chemical exposure.

In fact, this leads me to...
2.  California's database of nasties to eschew indefinitely: 

3. One great hope for the future:  The Pharos Project
Continuing to ask the questions, digging into the truth, is the laudable Pharos project.  It is starting with transparency first-- understanding what chemicals are built into the products we use in our projects, and being explicit about the risks.  They also host some very interesting information about the current events of 

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