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Workplace Safety

Ensuring that there are appropriate regulations to protect the safety of employees in the workplace, as well as that of the general public, is a high priority of the CPA.

For decades the association has sponsored the collection of US and Canadian industry safety related performance data and has recognized facility-specific safety accomplishments as well as workplace innovations.

CPA has also been one of the most knowledgeable and effective interveners with the US Environmental Protection Agency (ERPA) on its Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) regulations as these bear on “smokestack” emissions and both workplace and community safety. Most recently, the CPA has intervened on the Boiler MACT to modify EPA’s initial mischaracterization of resinated fiber burned for fuel in industry facilities.

The association also participates in forums and regulatory processes related to wood dust, occupational exposure limits in the workplace, and other issues that relate to employee and public safety.

Boiler MACT

On February 23, 2011, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its rule on Maximum Achievable Control Technologies (MACT) for boilers. Of particular note to panel manufacturers was the ruling regarding the designation of resinated wood as a fuel source. Resinated material would qualify as a “non-hazardous secondary material (NHSM),” allowing for its use as a fuel if it met a set of “legitimacy criteria” established by EPA.

Those criteria included:

1) The material must be managed as a valuable commodity;
2) The material must have a meaningful heating value and be used as a fuel in a combustion unit that recovers energy, and;
3) The material must contain contaminants at levels comparable to or lower than in traditional fuels that the combustion unit is designed to burn.

 

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Wood Dust

The American Conference of Government Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) is updating the Documentation for wood dusts and intends to seek public comment in mid 2012.  ACGIH did not change the Total Limit Value (TLV) recommendation for wood dust which remains at 1 mg/m3 inhalable.  In early 2012, ACGIH has also taken wood dust off the Under Study List (USL). The Inter-Industry Wood Dust Coordinating Committee (IWDCC) of which CPA is a member is asking ACGIH to reconsider their decision to remove wood dust from the USL and also asking ACGIH to take into consideration the latest scientific information available. See ACGIH Wood Dust Letter (restricted to members only)

Formaldehyde Occupation Exposure Limits (OELS)

Formaldehyde Occupational Exposure Limits (OEL) are regulated by OSHA in the U.S. and provincially regulated in Canada.   Below are the standards and fact sheet from OSHA defining

OSHA Formaldehyde Standards

OSHA Formaldehyde Fact Sheet

 

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