The Safety Principle is the last of the 12 principles of green chemistry.
The safety principle is pretty easy to understand. Substances used in chemical processes should be chosen to minimize the potential for chemical accidents.
The three authors of the paper on Principle 12, Shelley Bradley, Dr David C. Finster and Dr Tom Goodwin define safety as “the control of recognized hazards to achieve and acceptable level of risk.” It’s not no risk just an acceptable level. The authors opine that the Safety Principle is the most overlooked of the 12 principles. However, it is almost impossible to achieve the goals of principle 12 without implementing at least one of the other principles.
As green chemistry is about the reduction or elimination of hazardous substances this links to laboratory safety. And almost all green chemistry principles will result in a safer scenario.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has making the environment safer as its primary focus. What is good and safer for the environment is also likely to make things safer for the general public. But the other beneficiaries of green chemistry are laboratory and manufacturing workers.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has devised a new chemical management system to increase worker safety. The most effective way of increasing safety is to eliminate the hazard components. As this is the very essence of green chemistry it is hoped that that combination of the EPA and OSHA will have a significant effect on hazard reduction. If the two agencies work together towards a common goal one can hope for discussions and changes that mean safer conditions for workers. This will mean a safer environment for the general public and – best of all – a safer planet for everyone.
Halo is passionate about the preservation of the environment and safety of workers everywhere. To learn more about what Halo does contact us or complete the form below.