The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) was named a 2017 Safer Choice Partner of the Year winner by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at a ceremony on May 15, in Oxen Hill, Md. Dow was recognized in the Safer Choice Innovator category for two sustainable product innovations, ECOSURF EH Surfactants and BLUEDGE Polymeric Flame Retardant (FR) Technology.
“Dow is at the forefront of developing products that provide sustainable and safer alternatives, while delivering the performance customers expect,” said Neil Hawkins, Dow’s chief sustainability officer and corporate vice president of Environment, Health and Safety. “We are pleased to receive this EPA recognition of our approach to value chain innovation. Chemistry and materials science innovations are fundamental to sustainability.”
This recognition supports Dow’s commitment to achieve its 2025 Sustainability Goals, particularly the goal of Increasing Confidence in Chemical Technology, where the company is focusing on increasing confidence in the safe use of chemical technology through transparency, dialogue, unprecedented collaboration and research. The Safer Choice award highlights Dow’s commitment to innovation towards safer and more sustainable chemistries. The award also recognizes Dow’s commitment to the Safer Choice community, its extensive collaborative ingredient reviews for new and existing chemicals, and promotion of safer products and the Safer Choice program.
Learn more about Dow’s innovations in safer chemistry below:
ECOSURF EH SURFACTANT – Safer Choice challenged Dow to further address a potential toxicology concern for one of our products – ECOSURF EH-9 Surfactant that would impact the listing status of the product in the Program. After close collaboration and productive scientific discussions, a study was designed to clarify the scientific understanding of the Dow chemistry, which eventually led to a Safer Chemical Ingredient List status change. The collaboration is a great example of using the best science to define product safety and support the promotion of more sustainable choices for our customers.
“Sustainability is a key driver in our innovation strategy,” said Ester Baiget, business president for Dow Industrial Solutions. “ECOSURF EH Surfactants enable superior hard surface cleaning performance with an improved environmental profile. The development of these specialty surfactants demonstrates our commitment to researching the in-use effects of our products, preventing chemical risks, and understanding their long-term sustainability.”
BLUEDGE Polymeric Flame Retardant Technology is an innovation that is transforming the market as the next-generation industry standard flame retardant for use in polystyrene foam insulation. Historically, hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) had been used as the flame retardant in polystyrene foam insulation, but HBCD is facing global regulatory pressures that are driving its phase-out. After evaluating more than 100 potential substitutes, Dow developed BLUEDGE Technology, an inherently-low-toxicity additive that provides a fire safety solution for XPS and EPS foams. Dow has made the technology available to the global polystyrene foam insulation industry through three manufacturing and marketing licensees, enabling XPS and EPS thermal insulation materials to continue to meet the increasing demands of energy efficiency regulations and sustainable building design.
“BLUEDGE Technology is evidence that science and technology can answer the world’s most pressing challenges when no other solution exists,” said Ralf Brinkmann, business president for Dow Building & Construction. “This invention makes it possible for energy efficient building materials – like STYROFOAM Brand Insulation – to continue sustainable advancement today and into the future.”
The third annual Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards recognize program participants for advancing the goal of chemical safety. Safer Choice program participants are continually driving innovation to make chemical products safer.