2011-06

ALBEMARLE INCREASES PRICE OF BROMINE

Press Release: June 2011
Albemarle Corporation will increase its global prices for elemental bromine to $4500/MT minimum delivered and its global prices for hydrobromic acid by a minimum of $650/MT. These price increases will take effect immediately, or as contracts allow.
Demand for these products in traditional applications and markets has been very strong globally. To ensure a sustainable future for these important chemicals, Albemarle increased production capacities at its Magnolia, Arkansas facility and its joint venture facility, Jordan Bromine Company (JBC), during the past year and recently announced plans to double capacity at JBC.

BASF RAISES PRICES OF FORMIC ACID

Press Release: June 2011
BASF is raising its prices for formic acid in Europe 80 Euro per ton, in South America by 80 US-Dollars per ton and in Asia by 50 US-Dollars per ton.
BASF’s customers use formic acid in multiple applications. The eco-efficient acid helps to keep certain feeds fresh and free of salmonellae, removes paints and rust from metallic surfaces and scale from kettles and boilers. In breweries and wineries it disinfects kegs, casks and barrels; applied as an auxiliary in the pharmaceutical and crop protection industry it regulates pH values; in cleaning it acts as dirt remover and disinfectant. BASF is the world’s leading producer of formic acid, with production plants at its integrated Verbund sites in Ludwigshafen, Germany, and Nanjing, China.

MICROENCAPSULATION REDUCES ENVIRONMENTAL TOXICITY

International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry: June 2011
Biocides turn out to be less toxic for the environment if they are subjected to microencapsulation, due to the fact that this process forms shell(s) for the substance. This is the conclusion of chemist Ms Mariluz Alonso in a thesis at the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU). In this research, she chose a number of biocides and other complementary substances, seeking a micro-encapsulation which, besides being compatible with the environment, is more soluble in water, more manageable for the operator, with better conditions of conservation, and effective against airborne insects. Her thesis is entitled Micro-encapsulation of biocides.
The aim of the researcher was to obtain a product that overcame the limits of common biocides. These limits correspond to a toxicological profile that restricts their use, poor solubility in water, high viscosity (in some cases) that complicates their handling, and high sensitivity (in most cases) to light and temperature.  Within the study she managed to encapsulate tebuconazole fungicide.
As regards microencapsulation itself, the researcher opted for cyclodextrine-type (CD) carbohydrates as an encapsulating agent. Carbohydrates have high aqueous solubility, little tendency to absorb humidity, a high average lifespan at ambient temperature and are low cost. Cyclodextrines, in concrete, are cyclical dextrines obtained from the partial hydrolysis of maize starch. Also, a yield greater than 99 % was obtained in the formation of microcapsules, on applying a method for dissolution with organic solvents optimised in the laboratory where the research was undertaken.
Ms Mariluz Alonso Alonso (Bilbao, 1978) is a Doctor of Chemical Sciences. She drew up her thesis under the direction of Ms Rosa María Alonso Rojas and Ms Rosa María Jiménez Sanz; professor and senior lecturer respectively at the Department of Chemical Analysis of the Science and Technology Faculty at the UPV/EHU. Ms Alonso is currently a member of the research personnel contracted at this department.

HOME DEPOT FINED FOR SELLING HIGH VOC PAINT

The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD), the air pollution control agency for Orange County and much of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties, filed a lawsuit against The Home Depot Inc. alleging tens of thousands of air quality violations for displaying and selling coatings and paints that exceeded AQMD’s limits volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
District attorneys for Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties and the city attorney for the City of Los Angeles have also filed a second lawsuit related to the AQMD case. This suit alleges that Home Depot misled customers with false information about their products, which created an unfair business advantage over their competitors, according to AQMD’s statement.
The alleged violations of AQMD’s Rule 1113 that prohibits the manufacture, distribution, sale or use of non-compliant coatings could add up to steep fines: Home Depot could face penalties of up to $10,000 for each violation. Under the second lawsuit in accordance with the Business and Professions Code, Home Depot is subject to additional penalties of up to $2,500 for each act of unfair competition and $2,500 for each act of false and misleading advertising, AQMD says.
The AWMD filing alleges that Home Depot sold thousands of cans of sealers, clear wood coatings, lacquers and other paints and coatings in violation of air quality regulations. The products containing volatile organic compound (VOC) in excess of AQMD’s limits were found at more than two dozen stores, the authority alleges.
AQMD said that the products were available at stores even after Home Depot management had been notified of the problem. Some of the products had been marked down for quick sale, AQMD says.

EPA ACCEPTS CLOROX GERMICIDAL WIPES FOR C.DIFF

Infection Control: June 2011
The Clorox Company says the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has accepted the registration of Clorox Commercial Solutions Clorox Germicidal Wipes to kill Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) spores in five minutes.
Clorox announced the news today at the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) annual meeting. Clorox Germicidal Wipes, which are ready-to-use, hospital-grade disinfectant wipes, exceed the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended requirement to kill many of the pathogens of most concern to hospitals. Clorox Germicidal Wipes are equal to a 1:10 dilution of liquid bleach and include an odor-masking agent, specially formulated to provide fast, effective disinfecting to accommodate the most sensitive environments and users.
"The EPA registration reinforces Clorox's commitment to reducing the spread of infections and disease-causing pathogens, such as C. difficile, while providing useful and important tools to the healthcare community," said Craig Stevenson, vice president and general manager, Clorox Professional Products Company. "Clorox Germicidal Wipes provide a fast, highly effective way to help keep the patient environment disinfected and is an excellent addition to Clorox's comprehensive products to kill C. difficile spores."
The Clorox Germicidal Wipes EPA registration comes just months after the company's March announcement that its Dispatch Hospital Cleaner Disinfectant Towels received EPA registration for C. difficile spores.