September 20, 2016
Although halon production has been phased out for quite some time, there is still a substantial, aging installed base of halon. For a variety of reasons, system owners may be looking to replace their halon systems. For instance, some companies may be looking to reduce their footprint on the environment and others may be adapting to changes in the protected asset. And now’s a great time to make the switch from Halon. According to John Demeter, President of Wesco HMB, Inc., “Wesco has witnessed a dramatic increase in demand for recycled halon 1301 over the past year, which has led to more than a doubling of the price paid for recovered halon.” By recycling your halon you can offset the cost of your new fire suppression system and by choosing a non-hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) clean agent solution, you can avoid going through this process again.
HFCs, like halon, have been used for decades to protect valuable electronic and paper assets that would otherwise be destroyed by traditional water sprinkler fire protection, which is the reason HFCs emerged as an alternative when halons were phased out, until recently. HFCs themselves are now subject to global regulatory phase-down under the Montreal Protocol due to their high global working potentials (GWPs) and the availability of proven, more sustainable alternatives. So, when replacing your halon-based fire protection system, avoid HFCs, like FM-200™, and select a fire suppression solution that will stand the test of time and has a warranty to back it up – 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid.
August 23, 2016
On July 27, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent a proposal to The White House for final review, which would enact new restrictions on the use of the degreasing chemical trichloroethylene (TCE). According to the Chemical Regulations Reporter®, it remains unclear if the proposal would aim to enact a partial ban or phasedown of TCE to help prevent workplace exposure to the chemical, or if a full ban is recommended. Details of the proposal will not be released until The White House completes its final review (expected November 2016).
Section 6(a) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) provides authority for the EPA to ban or restrict the manufacture (including import), processing, distribution in commerce, and use of chemicals, as well as any manner or method of disposal. With this new proposal, the EPA will determine whether the continued use of TCE would pose an unreasonable risk to human health and the environment in vapor degreasing applications (RIN 2070-AK11) and as a spotting agent in dry cleaning and in certain consumer products (RIN 2070-AK03).
August 9, 2016
International media, including Reuters, UNEP News Centre and The New York Times, is buzzing about the July 15-23, 2016 climate change summit in Vienna, Austria and the significant progress that has been made on the global phasedown plans for hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) under the Montreal Protocol. Negotiations involved nearly 200 countries, resulting in what many environmentalists have called “the most significant action this year to reduce global warming,” according to The New York Times. With the draft language emerging from Vienna, it is anticipated that a final deal could be ready to be signed at the October summit in Kigali, Rwanda.
The main goals for the Vienna meetings were to reach a global agreement on the following, before the final summit in Rwanda in October:
“Amending the Montreal Protocol to phase down HFCs is one of the single most important unitary steps that we could possibly take at this moment to stave off the worst impacts of climate change and to protect the future for people in every single corner of the globe,” Secretary of State John Kerry said.
August 2, 2016
One of the most important decisions in designing a data center is choosing the right fire protection -because even a small fire can result in costly service interruptions, destroyed equipment, loss of valuable customer data and even disruptions to vital services such as emergency response and air traffic control. For every data center, the fire suppression system must be designed with various factors in mind, including location of racks, any barriers (e.g. aisle containment), and air flow patterns.
Finding a balanced solution that protects the business and critical assets, while anticipating regulatory changes and technological advances, can be complicated.
To help navigate the data center fire protection market, technology and the legislative landscape, the publication Data Center Solutions or DCS interviewed 3M’s Kurt Werner, Global Business Development Manager for 3M™ Novec™ 1230 Fire Protection Fluid.