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The Wonder World of Chemistry 1936 DuPont

Industrial Chemistry and Chemical Engineering

Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry

Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry

The Significance of IG Farben for Chemistry, Literature and Jews

Chemical Safety Board cuts investigations amid alleged mismanagement

Think Those Chemicals Have Been Tested?

Transcript From Secret Meeting: EPA Collusion With the Chemical Industry

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"Environmentally induced cancers are the result of human failure. This failure is not only of a misguided war on cancer focusing on the result and not the cause but also the continued addiction by agriculture and other industries to toxic agents. It also reflects a failed regulatory scheme coupled with antiquated and ineffective toxic chemical control laws. Nationally, our primary standard is the Toxic Substances Control Act, enacted in the 1970s. The act's main goal was to require comprehensive cancer tests for thousands of industrial oil in widespread use - a goal we have yet to achieve. Recognizing these national failures, two decades ago in California we enacted Proposition 65, requiring first a list by the governor of oil known to cause cancer, and then a warning before exposure where they pose a significant risk. The California agency charged with this task has not used its independent authority to list a carcinogen in more than five years." - Al Meyerhoff

The volatile compounds resulting from coke production were the coal tars, the soup from which new chemicals emerged; namely, the German chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Many of the 10,000 different molecules in the coal tar "soup" are cyclic carbon rings -- benzine and its variants -- such as phenols, aniline, and heterocyclics. These kinds of ring structures are highly reactive and easily opened the door to organic -- carbon-based -- chemistry.

The easiest carbon ring to form and modify has been the 6-carbon ring, "benzene". It accounts today for nearly 10% of the 24 million known (disclosed) compounds in the Chemical Abstracts Service Registry database.

"Carbon building blocks of a similar size -- rings or not -- when polymerized (strung together in repeating units), form plastics. If the strung-together chains zig-zagged repeatedly instead of being straight and taught, then the polymer was potentially elastic and might be a synthetic rubber. If the factory does the polymerization for you, it is a plastic or synthetic rubber. If you do the polymerization, the product is a varnish (paint) or glue. You polymerize with oxygen and UV bombardment; i.e., putting the varnished, painted or glued item out in the sun to "dry" (harden). For varnish or pigmented varnish ("paint"), solvents are added to retard polymerization, so in a sense the varnish or paint really is "drying", but the real issue (goal) here is polymerization not solvent loss. If the air's oxygen isn't enough, a chemical oxidizer is used. "MEKP" is popular (methyl ethyl ketone peroxide). " - J. I. Nelson, Ph.D.

6-carbon rings of benzene are easily added to because half the carbon-to-carbon bonds are double and can be "opened". One of the original chemical bonds continues to hold the ring together, while the chemist attaches something new to the other. Plastics (whether based on rings or not) can use opened double bonds to link the long (polymerized) chains to one another.

This hardens the plastic, changing it from bendable to hard (wine glass, plastic knife). Hardening synthetic rubber by cross-linking it this way is called "vulcanization". Hardened oils are called margarine, but no one wants to buy it if you use up all the double bonds ("saturated fats"). It's better if each building block has more than one double bond left ("polyunsaturated") because your own body can more easily attach another molecule (metabolize it), rather than leaving the hardened oils to pile up as arterial deposits.




World War I changed the minds of many German chemical company leaders when they saw foreign countries disregard their patents and enter the market with competing products.

1916 The Dreibund and the Dreierverband joined with "Chemische Fabrik vormals Weiler ter Meer" to form the precursor to IG Farben, the Interessengemeinschaft der deutschen Teerfarbenfabriken

(Common Interest Association of the German Coal Tar Dye Factories).

1917 Chemische Fabrik Griesheim-Elektron joins IG Farben.

Carl Duisberg pressured them to give up their independence, and after eight years he succeeded.

1925 IG Farben AG merging members:

BASF, The Badischen Anilin- und Sodafabrik (Ludwigshafen) Bayer ( Leverkusen near Cologne) Agfa, or Aktiengesellschaft für Anilinfabrikation (Mortsel near Antwerp and Leverkusen) Hoechst (including Casella and Chemische Fabrik Kalle) Chemische Fabrik vormals Weiler ter Meer (Uerdingen) Chemische Fabrik Griesheim-Elektron (Griesheim)

Germany processed and burned its ample resources of coal as it became a major steel producer. Coal processing for steel production involves driving off the volatile compounds in coal by heating it (without air) to make coke, which burns hotter and imparts no further impurities to steel save carbon. Carbon ("carbon steel") makes it possible to heat-treat (harden) and temper (soften) the steel.



2005 U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention releases a study in July 148 toxic compounds were looked for in the blood and urine of 2,400 Americans age 6 or older.

Several toxic compounds, including pyrethroids and phthalates are found to be in nearly every American child. Nearly 6% of the American women of child bearing age had sufficent quantities of mercury in their blood to impair mental development of the fetus.

"There are more than 80,000 oils on the market, the vast majority of which lack even basic information on health effects and toxicity. We do know that at least 1,400 oils have known or probable links to cancer, birth defects, reproductive effects and other health problems such as learning disabilities. Although the incidence of these diseases has been increasing for decades, a whole host of other obstacles to healthy development have also been on the rise, including premature birth, low birth weight, early puberty and childhood obesity. Recent science indicates that these problems are related to chemical exposure." - Dan Jacobson

According to The Story of Stuff there are now 100,000 (one hundred thousand) chemicals on the market. Long term effects of most chemicals are unknown and none of the combined effects have ever been studied. More than 77,000 chemicals are in active production in North America. More than 3,000 chemicals are added to our food supply. More than 10,000 chemicals in the form of solvents, emulsifiers, and preservatives are used in food processing, packaging, wrapping, and storage. 315 chemical contaminants were found in US tap water. One in eight of the 82,000 ingredients used in personal care products are industrial chemicals. Neurotoxins and other chemicals are added to vaccines. A german study shows that vaccinated children have at least 2 to 5 times more diseases and disorders than unvaccinated children. More than 1000 new chemicals are developed each year. Most of us have between 400 and 800 chemical residues stored in the fat cells of our bodies.

2007 The series of five articles was published in a supplement of the journal Cancer on May 14, 2007. Research by Silent Spring Institute -with additional researchers from Harvard University, Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the University of Southern California - synthesized national and international data sources and identified 216 chemicals that caused breast tumors in animal studies, and several chemicals that have been linked to breast cancer.

216 compounds cause breast tumors in animal tests:

73 have been present in consumer products or as contaminants in food
35 are air pollutants
25 have been associated with occupational exposures affecting more than 5,000 women a year
29 are produced in the US in large amounts, exceeding 1 million pounds per year

The database is accessible free of charge and include references to 900 studies, 460 of which are human breast cancer studies that were critically evaluated by the research team.

Silent Spring Institute's review of environmental factors and breast cancer



chemical security act

Chemical Security Act

Seven weeks after the September 11 attacks Jon Stevens Corzine introduces the Chemical Security Act, a bill that would require chemical plants to reduce toxic chemical inventories where practical and switch to less toxic chemicals when it was economically feasible. In many cases a plant manager could store a 30 day inventory of toxic chemicals rather than a full six months' worth.

"Simple, sensible economic reforms of that category could save a lot of lives in a catastrophic event. The industry does what it desires or what it thinks it can afford - and millions of Americans are at risk." - Senator Jon Corzine

The bill passed the Environment and Public Works Committee in a 19-0 vote.

After the George Walker Bush administration crushed the Chemical Security Act, Senator Jon Corzine stated, "There are currently no federal security standards for chemical facilities. None at all."

March 2003 Terrorism expert Rand Beers resigns after providing counter terrorism advice to every president beginning with Ronald Reagan, "Of course, there's no such thing as a perfect defense, but we are remiss if we do not try to protect our citizens. We know for sure, from interrogation of terrorists, that security measures have value, they discourage attacks. So, the idea that we should leave the barn door open is a dereliction of duty."

July 2003 Conference Board, a business research group, finds that American corporations have increased security expenditures less than 4 percent on average since the September 11 attacks.

The prospect of a chemical attack has been a favorite weapon of fear mongers since the Great War.


"George Walker Bush thought it would strike fear into our hearts to emphasize weapons Iraq was known to have, namely chemical weapons. The notion that chemical weapons pose any threat to us is farfetched. Mustard gas is effective in trench warfare, not in cross-hemisphere attacks.

Even if terrorists smuggled chemical weapons into the country, the casualties would be fairly minor. The only way to kill a number of people with chemicals is to concentrate the chemicals in huge quantities near a big city.

In fact, this country has lots of weapons like that. They're called chemical plants.

Attacking one with a truck bomb, or a small plane, would disperse far more toxins than any chemical weapons attack. The Congressional Research Service has found that we have 100 chemical plants that, if struck, would each endanger more than 1 million lives.

Indeed, US intelligence has discovered that al-Qa`ida has studied the possibilities." - Jonathan Chait, 03-26-06
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