Green Chemistry and Product Initiatives - Leonard Robinson


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Join Leonard Robinson as he guides us through the most recent details of the CA Chemical Green Chemistry Initiative. Among many other suggestions, this presentation focuses on how strategic public policy encouraging green capital investment, could increase California's share of the green chemical market by hundreds of billions of dollars!

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  • Green Chemistry shifts society’s focus from “cradle-to-grave” to “cradle-to-cradle.” Rather than concentrating only on controlling the consequences of the waste, effluent, and emissions that society generates, green chemistry moves upstream—where the goods and products we use daily are conceived, designed, and manufactured.
  • Green Chemistry also offers California substantial benefits: High-skill, high-wage jobs in the new “clean technology” and materials industries, Economic growth based on sustainable, green businesses, and Increased share of the estimated $16 trillion global materials market
  • And, California can increase its share of the U.S. chemicals market by adopting green chemistry strategies.
  • which will grow at a pace faster than global population increases. Worldwide, people are becoming more prosperous and demanding more consumer goods. [Note: MG can tell the “carpet on the toilet tank” analogy here if she likes…as long as no names, nationalities, or other references are used.]
  • By applying Green Chemistry principles, we can implement a more systematic approach—to toxics in products—than the current legislative “ban without a plan” reaction.
  • Many folks who participated in our initiative assumed we were talking about chemical production. The news stories we read every day about dangerous chemicals found in various consumer goods—children’s toys, pet food, toothpaste, etc.—and the legislative “ban without a plan” approach prompted our focus on products, especially those products which affect infants and children.
  • The marketplace today does not reflect the true cost of a product’s lifecycle. This slide shows the billions of dollars in taxpayer costs required to manage the long-term consequences of goods and products thrown away in the last fifty years. Green Chemistry is a way to reduce and avoid these costs over the next fifty years.
  • A few quick slides to give you an idea of the magnitude of three waste streams from our disposable consumer products society.
  • After robust dialogue with stakeholders from around the world and across all sectors over the last sixteen months, the Initiative distills all of what we heard into six recommended strategies for California.
  • After robust dialogue with stakeholders from around the world and across all sectors over the last sixteen months, the Initiative distills all of what we heard into six recommended strategies for California.
  • California already has lots of goals to reduce environmental impacts – but they are all single-media focused – moving to a multimedia lifecycle focus means we can start measuring tradeoffs, and allow the market to decide where it can most efficiently get the most environmental gains at least cost
  • Many leading companies have such metrics already – Levi Strauss, Patagonia, Nike and Timberland - Walmart is developing similar tools for all its product suppliers
  • Green Chemistry and Product Initiatives - Leonard Robinson

    1. 1. “ Everything you wanted to know about Green Chemistry, but were afraid to ask…” Leonard E. Robinson- EPA Dept of Toxic Substances Control
    2. 2. California Green Chemistry Initiative <ul><li>California is a leader in innovation, use, and manufacture of safer, ever more environmentally benign chemicals and products. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Green Chemistry: Two New Laws <ul><li>AB 1879 (Feuer): Framework to respond to chemicals of concern and to assess alternatives </li></ul><ul><li>SB 509 (Simitian): Increase information about toxicity for chemicals via an online portal </li></ul>
    4. 4. What is Green Chemistry? <ul><li>Cradle to Cradle </li></ul><ul><li>New approach to environmental protection </li></ul><ul><li>Benign by Design </li></ul><ul><li>Making products & processes safe from the design stage </li></ul>
    5. 5. Opportunity <ul><li>Shape global debate on chemicals and products </li></ul><ul><li>Restore California ’ s leadership in innovation and economic growth </li></ul><ul><li>Grow share of multi-trillion dollar global chemical and consumer products market </li></ul>
    6. 6. Opportunity to Increase CA Share of $635 billion US Chemicals Market LAO (2006): California Exports CA Chemicals = Only $7.2 billion
    7. 7. Global Chemical Production - Doubling Every 25 Years University of California, Berkeley
    8. 8. Green Venture Capital Investment HOW PUBLIC POLICY HAS STIMULATED PRIVATE INVESTMENT James Stack, Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley John Balbach, Cleantech Venture Network Bob Epstein, and Teryn Hanggi. May 2006.
    9. 9. <ul><ul><li>Toxics in consumer products </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information lacking for businesses and consumers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Existing cradle-to-grave framework is inadequate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Little control to influence design of products made overseas </li></ul></ul>The Challenges
    10. 10. Childhood Toxics Exposure from Products
    11. 11. Public Health Impacts GROWING UP TOXIC Chemical Exposures and Increases in Developmental Disease Travis Madsen, Yana Kucher and Teri Olle ENVIRONMENT CALIFORNIA RESEARCH AND POLICY CENTER June 2004 Autism Prostate Cancer Cryptorchidism Breast Cancer Sperm Density
    12. 12. Reduce Long-Term Waste Management Cost by Taxpayer $$ Collected $ $$ Needed $ $157 million $1.2 billion
    13. 13. Two million plastic beverage bottles discarded every five seconds in U.S. Only 3% of plastic is recycled.
    14. 14. 60,000 plastic bags used every 5 seconds in U.S.
    15. 15. 426,000 cell phones discarded each day in U.S.
    16. 16. Chemical-by-Chemical Bans – A piecemeal approach <ul><li>Ban on lead in jewelry </li></ul><ul><li>Ban on toxics in packaging </li></ul><ul><li>Ban on mercury in certain devices </li></ul><ul><li>RoHS ban on covered electronics Approach is not comprehensive and authority not specific </li></ul>
    17. 17. Three Strategies <ul><li>Build Capacity </li></ul><ul><li>Increase Infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>Create Tools for Better Decisions </li></ul>
    18. 18. Six Policy Recommendations <ul><li>Expand Pollution Prevention </li></ul><ul><li>Develop Green Chemistry Workforce, Education, Research and Tech Transfer </li></ul><ul><li>Create an Online Product Ingredient Network </li></ul><ul><li>Create an Online Toxics Clearinghouse </li></ul><ul><li>Accelerate the Quest for Safer Products </li></ul><ul><li>Move Toward a Cradle-to-Cradle Economy </li></ul>
    19. 19. Sample Environmental Footprint
    20. 20. Know Your Product ’ s Footprint Environmental Footprint for a Timberland Shoe
    21. 22. Stay In Touch! <ul><li>Leonard E. Robinson </li></ul><ul><li>Cal/EPA – Department of Toxic Substances Control </li></ul><ul><li>1001 I Street </li></ul><ul><li>Sacramento, CA 95814 </li></ul><ul><li>(916) 324-2471 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>EnviroBro Cal/EPA Department of Toxic Substances Control