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CCA Treated Timber Declared Safe


CCA Treated Timber Declared Safe

Two of Australasia’s most prominent toxicologists have just released a Report which unreservedly gives a clean bill of health to timber treated with a preservative including copper chrome and arsenic.

The Report is by Dr Peter N Di Marco, Australia’s leading toxicologist and Dr Wayne Temple, Director of the National Poisons Centre at Dunedin University, New Zealand. It includes findings from a recent visit by Dr Temple to the US where he met with the Environmental Protection Agency and attended a Conference which reviewed the very latest research available.

Fears that arsenic in treated timber represent significant public health risks have been rubbished in the Report.

It says “cancer risk estimates for CCA exposure are worst case hypothetical estimates and the true risk at low dose may be close to zero. Exposures to arsenic associated with CCA treated wood in domestic and playground settings do not pose a significant health risk to children”.

The Report puts any exposure well and truly into perspective by concluding that “background exposures to food and water sources are significantly higher than from estimated exposure to CCA treated timber. The combined intake of arsenic from all these sources fall well below the World Health Organisation tolerable daily intake of arsenic”.

“In the context of possible adverse health effects through exposure to CCA treated wood, the scientific evaluation is clear – there simply is no significant risk”.

The findings are consistent with those of the New Zealand Environmental Risk Management Authority which were based on a Report by Dr Deborah Read.

At a recent forum Dr Read described the scare headlines run in the media as a “beat up” with little substance. She expressed particular disappointment that the Dominion Post (which ran a campaign against CCA treated timber) refused to give her the results and details of its own research into so called contaminated playgrounds.

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