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1) dioxin and chickens 2) Medical PVC, Dioxins and EPA policy

  two items:
  Today's Chicago Sun-Times had a front-page story on the meat recall 
  and this story on page 18:
  Tainted Chicken
  More than 1,000 cases of processed breaded chicken, intended for 
  school lunches, was tainted with a toxic chemical and will be 
  destroyed, Chicago Public Schools officials said Thursday.  The U.S. 
  Department of Agriculture notified the State Board of Education that 
  the chicken contained higher-than-acceptable levels of dioxin, and 
  the state in turn warned local officials, a schools spokeswoman said. 
   None had been served to students.
  2) Despite missing the PVC-dioxin connection in the new MACT rule, it 
  seems that nearly ten years ago USEPA recognized the connection 
  between PVC in the medical waste stream and dioxin emissions from 
  medical waste incinerators and the need for a reduction/elimination 
  strategy based on segregation and/or replacement of PVC.  Too bad 
  they didn't recognize in the MACT rules what they themselves had 
  already concluded (similar to the weaknesses in the dioxin 
  U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Hospital Waste Combustion 
  Study:  Data Gathering Phase," EPA-450/3-88-017, Washington, D.C., 
  December 1988.
      "... it may be estimated that about 85 percent of a hospital's
      waste stream can be categorized as general refuse, while the
      remaining 15 percent is contaminated with infectious agents. 
      Thus, segregation of wastes at the point of generation can
      reduce the volume of infectious waste significantly. After
      segregation of infectious and non-infectious wastes, further
      segregation of the non-infectious portion could be possible. 
      Plastics and metal-containing components of the waste, such as
      sharps, could be segregated:  this could result in lower HCl,
      polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), polychlorinated
      dibenzofurans, and trace meal emission rates. ... Another
      approach to possibly lowering HCl and PCDD/PCDF emission rates
      would be to have hospitals use low chlorine content plastics. 
      This could be accomplished if the health care industry were to
      use plastics such as polyethylene and polystyrene in place of
      polyvinyl chloride, which contains over 45 weight percent
  Charlie Cray
  Greenpeace US Toxics Campaign
  847 W. Jackson Blvd., 7th floor
  Chicago, IL 60607
  Ph: (312) 563-6060 x218
  Fax: (312) 563-6099
  Note new e-mail address: Charlie.Cray@dialb.greenpeace.org