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Draft Assessment on CCA-Treated Wood Released for Scientific Peer Review

Release Date: 11/13/2003
Contact Information:


David Deegan 617-918-1017 / deegan.dave@epa.gov

(11/13/03) - The Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP), a group of independent scientists who advise EPA on critical science issues, will evaluate the Agency’s draft risk assessment on pressure-treated wood on Dec. 3-5. The draft assessment evaluates the potential risks to children who play on playsets and decks made with wood pressure-treated with chromated copper arsenate (CCA). This draft risk assessment focuses on a number of new predictive models and data sources that have been used to better quantify and understand potential risks associated with exposure to CCA-treated wood. The Agency is asking the SAP to review these new approaches and to provide comments to further refine the draft assessment.

It is important to note the draft risk assessment findings are preliminary and subject to additional analysis. Therefore, it is premature to reach conclusions about the potential for CCA-treated playsets and decks to contribute to cancer risk in children. In Feb. 2002, the manufacturers of CCA informed the Agency that they would voluntarily cancel their registrations for residential uses of CCA-treated wood. As a result of their voluntarily cancelled registrations, wood intended for uses such as playground equipment, decks, fences, walkways and landscape timbers cannot legally be treated with CCA after Dec. 30 of this year. In addition to the SAP review, the Agency is conducting a study on whether sealants can reduce or eliminate exposure to arsenic in CCA-treated wood as a further way to help consumers make informed choices around their home. Results from this study are expected in 2004. For further information, the draft risk assessment is available at: http://www.epa.gov/scipoly/sap; for more information on CCA-treated wood, go to: http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/.