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Toxic Chemicals: Responding to Challenges and Opportunities
Larson, Andrea Technical Note ENT-0043 / Published March 21, 2004 / 15 pages.
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Product Overview

The growing impact of toxic chemical use is a major issue corporations face in the 21st century. This note offers an overview of the effects of toxins on human health and the natural environment: Cancer, nervous system disorders caused by workplace exposure. Impaired endocrine, reproductive, and immune systems. Impeded physical and intellectual development. All are attributed to toxic exposure?sometimes even at very low levels. Toxic chemicals?ubiquitous in industrial processes and consumer products?represent both challenges and opportunities for business. One approach reduces a company's use of chemicals identified as problematic for human and ecosystem health. A second approach designs hazardous materials out of products or recaptures toxins in closed-loop cycles to be productively used again. Companies moving from a reactive stance to the redesign of products and processes not only reduce liability but differentiate their products and brands for competitive advantage.


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  • Overview

    The growing impact of toxic chemical use is a major issue corporations face in the 21st century. This note offers an overview of the effects of toxins on human health and the natural environment: Cancer, nervous system disorders caused by workplace exposure. Impaired endocrine, reproductive, and immune systems. Impeded physical and intellectual development. All are attributed to toxic exposure?sometimes even at very low levels. Toxic chemicals?ubiquitous in industrial processes and consumer products?represent both challenges and opportunities for business. One approach reduces a company's use of chemicals identified as problematic for human and ecosystem health. A second approach designs hazardous materials out of products or recaptures toxins in closed-loop cycles to be productively used again. Companies moving from a reactive stance to the redesign of products and processes not only reduce liability but differentiate their products and brands for competitive advantage.

  • Learning Objectives