Smarter Industrial Solvents and Cleaning Solvents Protect Your Business and Employees

ByTimothy Byron

Over the past few years, the term "going green" has become more than just a marketing buzzword. In fact, research continues to point to the harmful effects that industrial and chemical solvents have on people and the environment. As a result, governing organizations like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) have introduced regulations and guidelines to help protect people and our environment from exposure to these toxic substances.

While the implementation of these regulations and guidelines is great for businesses, their employees, and the environment, it can be confusing for business owners, managers, and others to maintain compliance. One of the first steps towards compliance is to learn the regulations and guidelines as they apply to industrial solvents in your industry. Luckily, there are OSHA training courses and even organizations available to help you transition your company's existing cleaning or maintenance tasks that use non-compliant cleaning solvents to those that are EPA and OSHA compliant.

The next step, naturally, is to start searching for safer industrial solvents that not only work effectively, but are also more environmentally sound. Research has found that many cleaning solvents-even those used for common household cleaning-contain unsafe levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as benzene, toluene, methylene chloride, and styrene, as well as other toxic chemicals. Exposure to these substances can cause eye irritation, respiratory irritation, nausea, fatigue, dizziness, and in some cases cancer.

Luckily, this knowledge has prompted many chemists, engineers, and companies to create healthier industrial cleaning solutions. Whether your company is looking for a neutral pH degreaser, a low VOC hand-wipe solvent, an environmentally-friendly paint remover, or a non-toxic aerospace adhesive remover, chances are there is an environmentally-preferred solvent available to meet your needs. In fact, some of these safer industrial solvents were actually created to work harder and make tasks run smoother.

Thanks to advances in technology, production, demand, and availability, transitioning to these safer solvents is not as expensive as many companies believe it will be. Additionally, many industrial solvent providers are eager to help companies find safer solutions that fit within the company's budget. Some of the more reputable providers are so committed to helping your company maintain compliance that they will actually work with you to create a total chemical management solution. This solution will help your company incorporate a safer strategy for procuring, using, and disposing of industrial solvents.

In addition to creating a healthier workplace, healthier employees, and a healthier environment, using safer alternatives to traditional industrial solvents can also help your company save in unexpected ways by lowering waste disposal fees and receiving economic incentives for reduced emissions.

Healthy employees and a safe work environment are invaluable to the overall productivity of any organization. Incorporating safer cleaning practices into your company is a great way to do this. Now, more than ever, safe alternatives to traditional toxic solvents are readily available at reasonable prices, and by doing just a little research, you can easily find a wealth of resources to ensure that your company maintains compliance.

Industrial solvents and cleaning solvents are a necessity in most industries. With greater emphasis being placed on the health of employees and the workplace, a variety of affordable, effective, and safe industrial solvents are available to organizations.

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