Electronic devices are a complex mixture of several hundred chemicals. Making a safer product by eliminating potentially hazardous chemicals from within a product is not easy. Any safe replacement has to perform the same function just as well as, or better than, the original. While reformulating a chemical may be possible, it introduces a risk that the reformulated substance may interact differently with the rest of the product.
There is not enough transparency about the hazardous chemicals currently used to make IT products or about their impact on worker health. Information about safer alternatives to these hazardous chemicals exists in some cases, but an understanding of how these safer alternatives might be applied in production processes is limited.
Through our participation in a multi-stakeholder network facilitated by the Green America Center for Sustainability Solutions, GEC is actively working towards minimizing worker exposure to hazardous chemicals in IT production processes.
To learn more about the Clean Electronics Production Network (CEPN), click here.