AF&PA backs EPA's proposed regulations for US-wide limit on formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products, CEO says North American producers have worked hard to meet 'rigorous' standards, are already certified to rule's requirements

WASHINGTON , June 10, 2013 (press release) – On Monday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its proposed regulations for the Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products Act, in which the statute sets formaldehyde emission limits for hardwood plywood, particle board, and medium density fiberboard.

The legislation – which was passed in 2010 – is supported by the American Wood Council (AWC), the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), and other wood products associations.

“We supported the legislation as consistent with good product stewardship, extending nationwide California’s existing rule, and we support reasonable standards that are consistent with our industry’s commitment to the safety of our products and the original intent of the legislation,” said AWC President and CEO Robert Glowinski. “We look forward to commenting on the proposal to ensure that the rules implement the full intent of the legislation.”

“American consumers should feel confident that products covered by the proposed regulations and made by North American manufacturers are low in formaldehyde emissions and are already certified as having met the requirements of this proposed EPA rule,” added AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman. “North American wood products manufacturers have worked hard to meet these rigorous standards and support their nationwide application.”

To the extent the proposed rules implement the State of California’s existing performance-based standard, the regulations would create a single nationwide standard and allow those manufacturers that are already complying to not be placed at a competitive disadvantage.

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The American Wood Council (AWC) is the voice of North American traditional and engineered wood products, representing over 75 percent of the industry. From a renewable resource that absorbs and sequesters carbon, the wood products industry makes products that are essential to everyday life and employs over one-third of a million men and women in well-paying jobs. AWC's engineers, technologists, scientists, and building code experts develop state-of-the-art engineering data, technology, and standards on structural wood products for use by design professionals, building officials, and wood products manufacturers to assure the safe and efficient design and use of wood structural components. AWC also provides technical, legal, and economic information on wood design, green building, and manufacturing environmental regulations advocating for balanced government policies that sustain the wood products industry. Visit AWC online at www.awc.org or follow us on Twitter @woodcouncil.

The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance a sustainable U.S. pulp, paper, packaging, and wood products manufacturing industry through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. AF&PA member companies make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative - Better Practices, Better Planet 2020. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 4.5 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures about $200 billion in products annually, and employs nearly 900,000 men and women. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 47 states. Visit AF&PA online at www.afandpa.org or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper.

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