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Chemical Reaction: Two flame retardants to phase out in 2004

On Monday, the sole U.S. manufacturer of two flame retardants pledged to cease making both products next year. The firm had initiated discussions with the Environmental Protection Agency about a potential phase-out just last month (SN: 11/1/03, p. 275: Flaming Out? Days may be numbered for two fire retardants). This week's announcement accelerates by 4 years the compounds' recently mandated elimination in California. The European Union had already announced a ban on the two flame retardants, which are widely used in furniture and plastic products. That ban is slated to go into effect next year.

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