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HBCD or HBCDD stands for hexabromocyclododecane and is a ring-shaped, brominated hydrocarbon molecule. Because of its technical properties, HBCD was mainly used as a flame retardant for plastics and was therefore mainly used in building insulation materials made of polystyrene (EPS / XPS), and to some extent also in packaging plastics (EPS). In May 2013 HBCD was classified as a persistent pollutant (POP) under the international Stockholm Convention. This resulted in a worldwide ban on trade and use (with transitional periods). Since 22 March 2016, no products (substances, mixtures and articles) containing more than 100 mg/kg HBCD may be manufactured and sold in the EU. A temporary exemption for polystyrene (EPS) ended on February 21, 2018. Insulation materials containing HBCD are not classified as “hazardous waste” in Germany, but separate collection, mixing, proof and registration are required.

Polystyrene panels for thermal insulation in wall areas

Polystyrene insulation boards under roofing

Extruded polystyrene insulation boards (green) in floor construction

LGA Institut für Umweltgeologie und Altlasten GmbH

Christian-Hessel-Str. 1
D-90427 Nürnberg

Phone:  +49 911 12076 100
Telefax:  +49 911 12076 110


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