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Why should Styrofoam be banned?

“Styrene is a suspected carcinogen and neurotoxin which potentially threatens human health.” “Due to the physical properties of polystyrene, the EPA states “that such materials can also have serious impacts on human health, wildlife, the aquatic environment and the economy.”

Why is Styrofoam bad?

Yes. Styrene is the building block for Styrofoam, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) lists styrene as a “probable carcinogen to humans”. And if that wasn’t bad enough, Styrofoam is commonly contaminated with flame-retardant chemicals that can leach into the environment and harm human health.

What are the effects of Styrofoam?

Styrofoam Health Risks Exposure to styrene can cause irritation of the skin, eyes, upper respiratory tract, and gastrointestinal tract. Overexposure can cause more severe effects such as depression, headaches, fatigue, weakness, hearing loss, and disrupted kidney function.

Does Styrofoam go off gas?

Polystyrene is biologically inert – so microorganisms have a a really hard time eating it. But burning polystyrene releases large amounts of Carbon Monoxide, along with Styrene and a slew of other toxic chemical compounds into the environment which are known to be hazardous to our health.

What country banned Styrofoam?

Bans on polystyrene food items are in place all over the world: in major cities such as Oakland, San Francisco, and Chicago; in the neighboring states of Maine, New York, and Vermont; and countries such as China, India, and Taiwan.

How long does Styrofoam take to decompose?

around 500 years
One common estimate is that styrofoam can take up 30 percent of the space in some landfills. Once in the landfill, it does not decompose quickly. Some estimates put the lifespan of styrofoam in a landfill around 500 years, and some put it way beyond that.

How do you dispose of Styrofoam?

Styrofoam is the household name for EPS, a kind of plastic. To throw away Styrofoam, remove any recyclable pieces, then break down sheets or blocks into smaller bits you can put in your regular trash can. To recycle, make sure you have plain white Styrofoam marked with the triangular recycling symbol.

Does Styrofoam keep cold out?

Styrofoam is primarily made of air. This makes it a poor conductor of heat but an excellent insulator. While a Styrofoam cooler does a great job of keeping cold items cool for long periods of time, they don’t cool items that are already warm.

Why is styrofoam bad for humans?

Styrene, the main ingredient in polystyrene foam, is a likely human carcinogen, according to both the International Agency for Research on Cancer and the National Toxicology Program. Heating up polystyrene foam containers can cause the styrene to leach into the food or drinks.

Is Styrofoam cancerous?

In the case of polystyrene, tiny amounts of styrene may remain following manufacture and it’s this substance that may migrate. In 2014, the National Research Council in the US reviewed the evidence and concluded that styrene is “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen”.

Are Styrofoam cups bad?

Polystyrene foam contains the chemical styrene, which has been linked to cancer, vision and hearing loss, impaired memory and concentration, and nervous system effects…the list goes on.

Is melted Styrofoam toxic?

Burning polystyrene on bonfires releases Carbon Monoxide and styrene monomers into the environment, which can be extremely hazardous to our health.

How is Styrofoam used as a building material?

Styrofoam is used in efficient building within the use of Insulated Concrete Forms, or ICF’s. ICF’s are typically made out of a polystyrene or polyurethane foam. They have knobs like Lego blocks and are stacked upon each other to build the form and foundation of the walls.

What kind of foam is used in airplanes?

It was often used in building full-scale, moldless, composite, experimental airplanes because of its superior strength-to-weight ratio. A similar foam by Dow, called UtilityFit, is available from Lowe’s ( It is sold in 4 x 8-foot sheets that are 2 inches thick.

What is the difference between styrofoam and polystyrene foam?

Styrofoam is a trademarked brand of closed-cell extruded polystyrene foam, or XPS. This foam is also referred to as “Blue Board” and is used for building insulation, thermal insulation and water barriers.

What’s the difference between blue board and styrofoam?

Styrofoam is a trademarked brand of closed-cell extruded polystyrene foam, or XPS. This foam is also referred to as “Blue Board” and is used for building insulation, thermal insulation and water barriers. Styrofoam is owned and manufactured by The Dow Chemical Company.