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Synthetic Turf Council Statement to CPSC re: Lead Use In Artificial Turf Market



Dr. Eddy Bresnitz,
Deputy Commissioner and State Epidemiologist, NJDHSS, said,

“Available evidence suggests that there is no acute health risks due to use of artificial turf fields, and risks due to chronic and repeated exposure are unlikely.” The three NJ fields tested negative for lead in the air above them, and the soil below them. The blood lead levels of over 70 children who regularly played on one of the fields tested at or below the national average.



The Facts

In over 40 years, there has been no evidence or science to suggest that synthetic turf poses a risk to human health or the environment.

· Encapsulated Lead Chromate in Synthetic Turf is Not a Health Hazard. Recent disclosures by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services that 3 synthetic turf sports fields tested with elevated levels of lead resulted in a warning about lead levels in synthetic turf. It is an ingredient in pigments used to color and improve colorfastness in many consumer products like synthetic turf. Over 90% of synthetic turf fibers contain pigments with very low or undetectable levels of lead chromate;

· Encapsulated Lead chromate is almost completely insoluble. It is encapsulated in glass and resin, and diluted so that it has extremely low bioavailability. It is not absorbed by the body if ingested or inhaled. It does not leach into the environment;

· Extremely Low Bioavailability of Encapsulated Lead Chromate. The Center for Disease Control’s Lead Prevention Program (1997-2006) identified no risks from synthetic turf during its investigation of 763,216 childhood exposures to lead. Of the nearly 40,000 cases of high blood lead concentrations in children reported in 2006, none were attributed to exposure to synthetic turf.

· Scientists Support Synthetic Turf Has Few Health Risks.

“There is no scientific evidence of a health risk for children or adults based on recent test results and current knowledge of the chemical structure of aged synthetic turf products,” concluded Davis Lee, Ph.D., synthetic organic chemistry, and David Black, Ph.D., forensic toxicology, April 21, 2008. Drs. Lee and Black calculated that a 50-lb. child would have to ingest an over 10 square feet of synthetic turf to receive 90 ppm of lead, the U.S. toy industry’s voluntary standard for migratory lead.

    Market Developments for Synthetic Turf Fibers:

New Research is underway to ensure the product is safe. New pigment formulations are being developed to continue to reduce encapsulated lead chromate levels for all of our colors without compromising performance required by buyers.

To download a PDF of the complete statement, please go to our F.R.E.E. Public Download Library by clicking on this link: STC_Statement_CPSC_Lead_05.08_.pdf

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ASGi - the Association of Synthetic Grass Installers was founded in 2007 to help connect market partners and their customers in the artificial grass and synthetic turf industry. We have grown into a global presence, focused upon the niche markets of landscape and leisure sports. Take a moment, browse the site - or email or phone us if we can be of help in answering a question or locating information. Phone US TOLL FREE - 888-378-4581 View all posts by ASGi

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