ACC Association News

ACC lauds introduction of bipartisan legislation to renew trade promotion authority

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 17, 2015

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) released the following statement in response to the introduction of the "Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015" (TPA-2015) by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis.: "ACC and our members commend Chairman Hatch, Ranking Member Wyden and Chairman Ryan for taking this critical next step toward realizing America's ambitious trade agenda. Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) can help U.S. chemical manufacturers capitalize on economic and job-creation opportunities that could not have been conceived just a decade ago, before the shale gas revolution made the U.S. one of the most competitive places in the world to manufacture chemicals." Read more.

Spray Foam Coalition sponsors event to inspire next generation of clean energy leaders

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 17, 2015

The Spray Foam Coalition of the American Chemistry Council's Center for the Polyurethanes Industry announced that it is sponsoring a competition for students to design energy efficient, high performance homes. The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Race to Zero Student Design Competition was created to inspire the next generation of architects, engineers, construction managers and entrepreneurs to design homes with features that sharply reduce energy use and offset all or most of the remaining energy with renewable energy. In the competition, undergraduate and graduate student teams submit market-ready designs for homes that are more energy efficient than standard new homes. The entries are judged by experts that include builders, building science professionals and researchers. Read more.

ACC honors FMC Corp. with award for outstanding safety initiative

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 16, 2015

Today, at the 2015 Responsible Care Conference & Expo, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) honored FMC Corporation with its 2015 Initiative of the Year Award, in recognition of the company's 'TH!NK. SAFE.' global safety program initiative. Anchored by FMC's Safety Manifesto, which has been translated into 11 languages and featured at all company site locations, TH!NK. SAFE. engages employees and instills a sense of individual and collective safety responsibility throughout the company. TH!NK. SAFE. has been one of the key factors in decreasing FMC's total recordable injury rate, which decreased from 0.74 per 100 employees to 0.51 per 100 employees over the past three years. Learn more.

ACC comments to CPSC detail significant concerns with proposed phthalate rule

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 16, 2015

The High Phthalates Panel of the American Chemistry Council submitted comments yesterday detailing the Panel's significant concerns with the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) Proposed Rulemaking for the Prohibition of Children's Toys and Child Care Articles Containing Specified Phthalates based on the 2014 Chronic Hazard Advisory Panel (CHAP) Report. "We have serious concerns about the process by which this proposed rule was developed, the report that was used as the scientific basis for this regulation and with the proposed rule itself," said Eileen Conneely, director of the High Phthalates Panel. "Flaws in CPSC's rulemaking process combined with the serious flaws in the CHAP report demonstrate that a regulation to permanently ban the phthalate DINP in toys and childcare articles based upon recommendations in the CHAP Report would be scientifically unjustified and, therefore, arbitrary and capricious." Read more.

Chemical manufacturers honored for outstanding health, safety initiatives

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 15, 2015

Yesterday, at the 2015 Responsible Care Conference & Expo, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) recognizes chemical industry leaders for exceptional accomplishments in chemical management, including environmental, health, safety and security (EHS&S) performance. In addition to celebrating Responsible Care companies and their achievements, the Responsible Care Conference & Expo provides a forum for industry leaders to learn from their peers and other experts in the field about best practices to expand EHS&S performance initiatives. ACC Responsible Care award winners qualify based on exemplary performance and are selected by a committee made up of internal and external experts. Read more.

ACC announces 2015 Responsible Care Energy Efficiency Award winners

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 15, 2015

At the 2015 Responsible Care Conference & Expo this week, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) honored 20 of its member companies for implementing energy efficiency improvements in 2014. ACC presented a total of 56 awards to these companies, 12 of which were deemed programs of "Exceptional Merit." The total annual energy savings of the winning projects was 7 trillion BTUs, enough to power all of the homes in a city the size of Erie, Pa., for a year. The Responsible Care Energy Efficiency Awards program is among ACC's many ongoing initiatives to enhance energy efficiency. Member companies are required to consider operational energy efficiency as well as waste minimization, reuse and recycling when developing their environmental, health, safety and security plans. Read more.

Registration open for ICCA-LRI & U.S. EPA Workshop

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 13, 2015

Registration is now open for the ICCA-LRI & U.S. EPA Workshop titled "What Will Work? Application of New Approaches for Chemical Safety Assessments." This workshop will critically review outcomes from ongoing pilot applications as the foundation for a discussion of future approaches to chemical safety assessments and their potential value for advancing chemical evaluations. The workshop will take place June 16-17 in New Orleans, La., and registration is free. Learn more, or register now.

An energy and water efficiency playground on California's Capitol lawn!

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 13, 2015

Earlier this week, ACC joined groups from the energy and water efficiency sectors to demonstrate to California regulators and lawmakers how chemistry enables new and existing technologies that can help California meet its ambitious renewable energy and efficiency goals. The pop-up expo took place on the lawn of the Capitol in Sacramento and also included information on water efficiency products. Attendees also learned more about the University of California at Davis' California Lighting Technology Center's efforts to reduce the amount of energy used to light California's buildings and outdoor spaces. Comcast displayed products related to EcoSaver, a new cloud-based solution that learns heating and cooling patterns of a home for additional energy savings. Read more.

Registration is now open for North America's longest-running polyurethanes conference

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 10, 2015

The 2015 Polyurethanes Technical Conference, hosted by the Center for the Polyurethanes Industry, offers the unique convergence of industry expertise, professional networking and regulatory insight. Featuring more than 80 presentations on topics spanning everything from cutting-edge polyurethanes technologies and chemistry-focused technical discussions to big-picture analysis of industry technology trends, the 58th annual Polyurethanes Technical Conference remains a benchmark for the industry's top technical discussions and presentations. Additional events include CPI's annual Polyurethane Professional Development Program, the Industry Reception, the Table Top Exhibition, the Innovation Award and a Pre-Conference Workshop on Environmental, Health and Safety Issues. The conference takes place at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando, Florida, from Monday, October 5, to Wednesday, October 7, 2015. See more information on early registration specials and discounted room rates.

Capitol Lawn Event showcases technologies to help the Golden State meet energy goals and improve water use

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 08, 2015

ACC hosts energy and water efficiency exhibit, demonstrating how companies are meeting the challenge to build better homes and offices The American Chemistry Council (ACC), and representatives from energy and water efficiency sectors came together yesterday to showcase building products that highlight how new and existing technologies and chemistry can help the state meet its efficiency goals. The event, Meeting the Challenge Together: Building an Energy Efficient California, comes as the Governor, the California Energy Commission and the Legislature are all pushing for higher resource efficiency standards in new and existing buildings. "We're proud that spray polyurethane foam insulation is a partner in addressing the state's energy efficiency goals," said Tim Shestek, ACC senior director. "Spray foam insulation has proven to substantially reduce energy needs and costs for both residential and commercial buildings. There are many new homes and offices being built throughout the state that will have smaller environmental footprints thanks to spray foam insulation and the other technologies displayed here." Learn more.

Procter & Gamble joins national effort to recycle flexible plastic wraps, bags

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 08, 2015

ACC is pleased to announce that the Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG) has joined the Flexible Film Recycling Group (FFRG), a self-funded group that is driving unprecedented growth in the recovery of flexible polyethylene (PE) film, wraps and bags. "Optimizing and recovering packaging is a key part of our sustainability mission at P&G," said Stephen Sikra, P&G Research and Development Manager. "Our aim is to reduce our environmental footprint as a Company and that of the consumers who choose our products. Working with the FFRG and our value chain partners to expand film collection and recycling is a focused priority as we work toward that goal." Learn more.

ACC Weekly Economic Report

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 06, 2015

The economic reports this week were fairly positive. Consumer confidence improved and with a good rise in personal incomes, this should lead to higher consumer spending in the months to come. The large jump in light vehicle sales for March provides an early view into this higher spending. All eyes were on today's employment report, which was disappointing. Weather issues are at play but the role of the retreat in the energy sector and the effects of a higher U.S. dollar are factors hindering gains. The U.S. trade deficit narrowed in February as imports fell faster than exports. Turning to chemistry, the ISM report indicates that the chemical industry expanded during March. Subscribe here.

ACC celebrates World Water Day

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 01, 2015

In 1993, the United Nations declared March 22 to be celebrated as "World Day of Water." Most people now simply call it World Water Day, and it has grown in awareness ever since. In the United States, we have the good fortune to take safe drinking water for granted. The very idea of developing a chlorinated drinking water supply started in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1908. At the time, the bold experiment was considered risky. Yet there was no doubt that drinking water chlorination proved effective in reducing the spread of waterborne diseases like typhoid fever and cholera. More than 100 years ago, those diseases were all too common in American communities. Today, they've been virtually eliminated in the United States thanks to widespread water disinfection -- with most water systems still using chlorine chemistry in some capacity. Learn more.

North American Flame Retardant Alliance responds to Consumer Product Safety Commission petition on flame retardants

ACC SmartBrief | Apr 01, 2015

A petition was filed yesterday requesting that the Consumer Product Safety Commission ban all organohalogen flame retardants from four categories of consumer products. In response to the petition, the American Chemistry Council's North American Flame Retardant Alliance released the following statement. "Flame retardants are subject to review by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and global regulatory bodies. In fact, EPA as part of its ongoing review of chemicals in commerce has identified approximately 50 flame retardants that it says are unlikely to pose a risk to human health. It's unfortunate that these petitioners are presenting families with the false choice between chemical safety and fire safety when we can have both. Families should know that flame retardants can help provide strong protection against potentially devastating situations. They have been proven to be a critical component of fire safety and can help save lives."

Rare Earth Technology Alliance Information Network (RETAIN) extends invitation for participation

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 31, 2015

The Rare Earth Technology Alliance, an initiative of the American Chemistry Council, is extending an invitation for your participation in the Rare Earth Technology Alliance Information Network (RETAIN). RETAIN provides rare earth professionals or those with an interest in the rare earth industry with information about relevant issues. The participation fee for RETAIN is $100 for the remainder of 2015. Participation in RETAIN is being offered to American Chemistry Council members at no cost. If you would like to participate in RETAIN for 2015, please complete the registration form on the Rare Earth Technology Alliance Website.

Register now for the 2015 Responsible Care Conference & Expo

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 27, 2015

The 2015 Responsible Care Conference & Expo is only a few short weeks away. The 2015 conference will be held April 13-16 at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel in Miami, Fla. If you have not already done so, please be sure to make your hotel reservation soon. For a full listing of 2015 conference sessions and speakers, download the Advance Program, or register now.

Last day to participate in Petroleum Additives Panel survey on lubricant oil additive industry

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 27, 2015

ACC's Petroleum Additives Panel (PAP) is requesting participation in a survey to collect information on the lubricant oil additive industry. Survey information is being gathered in response to a voluntary information request by the EPA, as it works to develop an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Emission Scenario Document on "Lube Oil Additives." Survey responses should be submitted no later than today, March 27. For more information, please contact Colleen Stevens.

Petroleum additives panel requests lube oil additive industry participation in survey

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 26, 2015

ACC's Petroleum Additives Panel (PAP) is requesting participation in a survey to collect information on the lubricant oil additive industry. Survey information is being gathered in response to a voluntary information request by the EPA, as it works to develop an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Emission Scenario Document on "Lube Oil Additives." Survey responses should be submitted no later than Friday, March 27. For more information, please contact Colleen Stevens.

Plastics makers applaud New Jersey for moving to phase out synthetic microbeads in personal care products

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 25, 2015

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie yesterday signed into law Assembly Bill 3083, which prohibits the production, manufacture and sale of personal cosmetic products containing synthetic plastic microbeads. New Jersey follows Illinois in becoming the second state to pass such a measure. Several other states and Congress are considering similar legislation. The following statement may be attributed to the American Chemistry Council: "America's plastics makers applaud the New Jersey legislature and Governor Christie for taking this important step to phase out the use of microbeads in personal care products. This new law builds on voluntary efforts initiated by personal care product makers and is supported by industry, NGOs and government alike. As other states and Congress work to adopt similar measures to phase out microbeads, we look forward to working with policymakers to develop legislation that is consistent with the strong models passed in Illinois and New Jersey." Read more.

U.S. chemical production notches highest year-over-year gain since 2010 despite slowdown in overall manufacturing

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 25, 2015

According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), as measured on a three-month moving average (3 MMA) basis, the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) continued to expand, rising by 0.2 percent in February following a downwardly revised 0.3 percent gain in January. The gain in February was the eleventh consecutive monthly gain. All major chemical producing regions posted consecutive gains in February. Read more.

Leading economic indicator shows signs of a spring thaw

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 24, 2015

The Chemical Activity Barometer (CAB), a leading economic indicator created by the American Chemistry Council (ACC), was flat in March following a 0.3 percent and 0.1 percent upward revision in January and February, respectively. Data is measured on a three-month moving average (3MMA). Accounting for adjustments, the CAB remains up 3.0 percent over this time last year, a slight deceleration over prior year-over-year growth. "Economic data for recent months are likely slightly skewed by seasonal factors, including the unusual deep freeze that engulfed a good part of the country. The housing sector was particularly adversely affected by weather," said Kevin Swift, chief economist at the American Chemistry Council. Each housing start represents approximately $15,000 of chemistry, Swift noted. "March is returning to normal, but it may take a few more weeks before the data reflect a real normalcy, but we know with certainty that U.S. chemical exports are softening as a result of the strong dollar," he added. Read more.

Listening to the Science on BPA in Australia and New Zealand

ACC SmartBrief | Mar 20, 2015

Consumers can have confidence in the safety of BPA. In recent months, several leading government bodies around the globe have made clear statements in support of the safety of bisphenol A (BPA) as it is used in consumer products. These are not merely opinions, but are sound conclusions backed up by comprehensive reviews of the extensive scientific literature on BPA. Of particular significance are the results of an in-depth research program on BPA conducted by U.S. government scientists at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other agencies. In a recent update, Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) joined the chorus of government bodies highlighting BPA safety, stating that "the overwhelming weight of scientific opinion is that there is no health or safety issue at the levels people are exposed to." Learn more.

Sign up for ACC SmartBrief

Designed specifically for American chemistry professionals, ACC SmartBrief is a FREE, daily e-mail news briefing. It provides the latest news and information on the American chemistry industry. Learn more