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July 13, 2022Switch to safer basic chemicals, activists tell industry

The chemical industry needs to switch away from its major building-block petrochemicals so it can transform into a sector that no longer harms people’s health or the environment, according to a July 13 report from activists. Lower-hazard substances that are not derived from fossil fuels should replace benzene, butadiene, ethylene, methanol, propylene, toluene, and xylene, says the report by the group Coming Clean. It is a US-based network of community activists, environmental justice organizations, and policy, science, and market experts. “The petrochemical sector’s reliance on fossil-fuel feedstocks and manufacturing processes that have evolved little in a hundred years is a massive barrier for change,” Beverley Thorpe, program manager at Clean Production Action and author of the report, says in a statement.


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