The Journal
Go Back
Toxin Free Consumer Products
Leadership and innovation in industry
Posted on August 1, 2023 @ 5:42PM

This is the first TV free of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFRs), built by Philips Electronics. We need to support industry leaders who are demonstrating that innovation can move us away from industrial production that poisons the environment. BFRs, used in circuit boards and plastic casings, do not break down easily and build up in the environment. Long-term exposure can lead to impaired learning and memory functions. They can also interfere with thyroid and oestrogen hormone systems and exposure in the womb has been linked to behavioral problems.

PVC is a plastic found all around us. It is ubiquitous in building materials and products, and also in electronics products and for insulation on wires and cables. Chlorinated dioxins and furans are released when PVC is produced or disposed of by incineration (or simply burning). These chemicals are highly persistent in the environment and many are toxic even in very low concentrations.

Philips has also set the bar high for the elegant reuse of reclaimed materials, much lower energy consumption to operate, elegant design that eliminates waste and facilitates reuse of all components later, and a host of other features that are great examples of innovative thinking with sustainability and health at top of mind.

By launching a PVC- and BFR-free TV, Philips has overcome the technical hurdles to removing these toxic substances from this product group. The Econova TV puts Philips on track to meet its commitment to phase out hazardous substances by the end the year, well ahead of other TV manufacturers. There is now no excuse for other TV manufacturers not to follow their example, but here is a growing gulf between companies that are consistently innovating and leading by releasing greener products and companies that just make promises and excuses.

Author: Sam Rodell

Sam has practiced as an award winning architect for forty years, and has also built many of his clients' projects.  He is licensed throughout most of the western USA and Canada, and is certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) which expedites registration in other states and provinces. He was the first Certified Passive House Consultant architect in eastern Washington and northern Idaho.