No potty favors

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Have you ever wondered about the chemicals they use in the portable toilets on your property or on building sites near your property? Unfortunately, there is a portable toilet situated close to my property which is infiltrating the air vents into my house, especially on foggy, humid days and nights. The noxious vapors emitted by this portable toilet are extremely irritating to our eyes and seem to be causing other health problems as well. So I found out what they were pumping in there every week. I was outraged! Here’s why and keep in mind that if this is happening to me, it could also happen to you.

One of the chemicals that this particular company uses is called 2-Bromo-2-nitro-1, 3-propanediol. It’s a high hazard, human immune system toxicant and is listed on the EPA’s toxic release inventory. It’s dangerous to the environment, usually contaminated with formaldehyde, extremely toxic to aquatic life, and is rated 10 out of 10 as a high hazard on the Environmental Working Group’s website.

This chemical and the others added to the mix can become vaporous in moisture, which means it gets into the air during these foggy winter days along the coast. It can cause severe eye irritation and damage to the respiratory system. In animal studies, more than 50% of the test rats died while breathing it!

Now let’s talk about the fragrance that is added to this vaporous chemical mix. The manufacturers are allowed to list it simply as “fragrance,” even though a single masking fragrance can contain up to 600 different chemical ingredients. Many are cited as irritants and pollutants in several major studies. Ten to fifteen percent of this formula is hidden behind what they call “trade secrets” not revealed to the public. Are you outraged yet?

We need more safety legislation and public disclosure. Before using the company, demand to see its material safety sheet and ask for all ingredients in writing. There are non-toxic and non-scented alternatives to these chemicals. What you don’t know can kill you!

Cindy Emminger