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DuraSoft Project: a multidisciplinary approach for softwood protection
2021 - IRG/WP 21-50367
Over the course of millennia, fishing and agro-pastoral activities have produced unique housing types in the Italian lagoons and in the Slovenian highlands where the use of wood is predominant. They are associated with wooden service infrastructures such as piers, moorings, piling and fences. However, the existence of these structures and the associated cultural heritage are subject to constant maintenance no longer economically sustainable in humid and coastal environments where wood degradation is massive and fast. To overcome this problem, in the last century the use of particularly polluting wood protection products as well as of unsuitable materials have been perpetrated, causing environmental damage or unsustainable use of resources. The DuraSoft Project aims to test some new techniques and products, developed and produced by the partners, which intend to increase the durability of traditional wood species. The treated wood may be used for traditional constructions in socio-ecologically sensitive environments, making its use economically and environmentally sustainable within the Adriatic alpine-maritime area. The environmental compatibility of these techniques is evaluated through a broad spectrum of ecotoxicological tests. They will be applied at different levels of biological organisation, from the molecular and cellular responses measured in bioindicator organisms to the effects on epibionthic microbial communities. The wood species and the treatments applied are tested with different methods to evaluate both the wood materials and real objects degradation performances, applying also standard methods (EN 275, EN 252). Coniferous wood is historically used in the Alpine-maritime area of the Upper Adriatic, but is less durable than hardwood species. The objectives of the DuraSoft Project are particularly relevant due the high availability of softwood lumber following the recent disasters caused in the Alps by Climate Change.
I Guarneri, V Moschino, N Nesto, T Marceta, M Sigovini, E Borella di Torre, L Dametto, S Pasqual, M Humar, B Lesar, T Cibic, V Natali, E di Poi, F Cerino, D Formasaro, M Kralj, F Relitti, C Balestra, M Celussi, A Franzo, A Volpi Ghirardini, M Picone, G G Distefano, M Russo, D Marchetto, R Rakar, I Trobec, D Marinic, G Rep, N Thaler, T Galvan, R Lazzarini, F Gombac, D Tagliapietra
Evaluation of ecotoxicological effects of different coniferous wood treatments on two marine bioindicator species
2022 - IRG/WP 22-10999
Coniferous wood panels (Picea abies) were treated with two concentrations of copper-based impregnating agent to increase its durability in marine and brackish environment. In order to assess the environmental compatibility of the treatments a laboratory experiment was conducted with two marine invertebrate species: bivalve Mytilus galloprovincialis and a gastropod Steromphala albida. The bioindicator organisms were maintained for 4 weeks in experimental tanks under semi-static condition at control (without wood panels), NTC (non-treated wood panels), CuI (wood panels treated with 0.033% Cu solution) and CuII (wood panels treated with 1% Cu solution) conditions. After 2, 8, 18 and 25 days, water samples were collected to analyze copper release over time. The presence of oxidative stress was evaluated through the determination of catalase and glutathione-s-transferase enzymes activity, the response to metal exposure through metallothionein levels and the presence of neurotoxic effects through acetylcholinesterase activity determination. For the evaluation of possible genotoxic effects in mussels, presence of micronucleus in hemocytes was evaluated, while physiological responses in mussels and behavioral endpoint in snails were evaluated with survival in air test and flipping test, respectively. CuII condition exhibited the highest toxicity and in both mussels and snails, mortality was significantly affected reaching 100% before the end of the experiment. Conversely, results of all biomarker analyses allowed to exclude toxic effects of NTC and CuI conditions on the two model species. Toxic effect observed in CuII are consistent with copper concentration that was above 200 and 400 ppb after 2 and 8 days of exposure respectively, while was below 50 ppb during all the experiment in the other tested conditions.
T Marčeta, N Nesto, I Guarneri, D Tagliapietra, V Moschino
Danish wood preservatives approval system with special focus on assessment of the environmental risks associated with industrial wood preservatives
2001 - IRG/WP 01-50166-01
The following is a description of the procedure used by the Danish Environmental Protection Agency to assess the environmental risks associated with preservatives used in the pressure impregnation of wood. The risk assessment covers issues considered to be of significance for the environment and which are adequately documented so as to allow an assessment. Such issues are persistence and mobility in soils, bioaccumulation and the impact on aquatic and terrestrial organisms. Unless required in special circumstances, the assessment does not apply to birds and mammals as the normal use of preservative treated wood is not expected to involve any noteworthy exposure of these groups. Approval of wood preservatives will be based on a general assessment of the environmental risk associated with the normal use of wood treated with the preservative in a realistic worst case situation. The assessment may address other aspects such as disposal and total life cycle.
The applicability of life cyle analysis and alternative methods in the wood preservation industry
1994 - IRG/WP 94-50023
In the Netherlands, several case studies have been performed using the life cycle analysis method (LCA). This type of research is aimed at an inventory and classification (sometimes including also evaluation) of the environmental impacts of a product, from the raw material to waste stage ("cradle to grave" approach). In a LCA each environmental impact is assessed in terms of, for example, mass of raw material use (kg), energy consumption (MJ), emissions (COx, NOX, SOx, etc.) and final waste (in kg). The critical point in an LCA is the definition of comparable "functional units" for similar products made of different materials with different service lifes. As the LCA method has often proved to be very complex, lime-consuming, expensive and difficult to interpret and translate into practically usefull results, alternative methods are developed. Three methods are described and compared on the basis of various examples. It is hoped that this may be of use as a starting point for further discussion on the suitability of applying the LCA on (preservative treated) timber products.
P Esser, J Cramer
Environmental status of wood preservation in the UK
1994 - IRG/WP 94-50018
The environmental status of wood preservatives and treated wood in the UK is summarised. The current legislatory position with respect to approvals, supply, use and waste disposal is considered. The bibliography at the end of this paper contains details of all publications referred to together with other relevant information although this cannot be exhaustive.
Loss of preservatives from treated wood during service
1992 - IRG/WP 92-3734
During the 23rd IRG conference in Harrogate the matter of preservative losses from treated wood during service was raised. We were asked to collect information in this field and ask now for help from you. Many tests have been carried out at a laboratory scale to study fixation and leaching from wood treated with different preservatives. Very little, however, is reported on losses of preservatives during service. Since these values are of great relevance regarding environmental impact and the final disposal, reuse or recycling of treated wood, it is of great importance to get as much information as possible on the amount of active ingredients lost during service life. We are convinced there are quite a lot of analytical data and additional information available in many places all over the world. It appears to be rewarding to collect those data and put them together adequately to get an astimate of the losses of the different components based on a broad scale of in service situations. This work will be done as soon as information is available and it is intended to present the results on next IRG meeting.
M-L Edlund, D Rudolph
Programme section 5, Environmental aspects
1997 - IRG/WP 97-50099
Programme section 5, Environmental aspects
1996 - IRG/WP 96-50077
The registration of wood preservatives under the Pesticides Act of 1962 in the Netherlands
1976 - IRG/WP 364
J Van der Kolk
Programme Section 5 Environmental aspects
1999 - IRG/WP 99-50138
Regulations of pesticides (including wood preservatives) in the United States
1977 - IRG/WP 397
G B Fahlstrom
Environmental issues: Messages for the wood preservation industry
1985 - IRG/WP 3353
A review of the origins and structure of environmental legislation throughout those territories of the world where wood preservation is a major industry is given. The implications of media, industry and legislation interaction is discussed and suggestions made as to the key issues the wood preservation industry should concentrate its attentions on in the immediate future.
D G Anderson, P Waldie
The role of communication in the field of environment protection: A case study "Wood Protection"
1990 - IRG/WP 3574
Rates of emission from CCA-treated wood in the marine environment: measurement, modelling and requirements for further research
2001 - IRG/WP 01-50166-12
Accurate estimates of rates of emission of leachate from preservative treated wood are crucial for realistic predictions of the environmental impact of its use in maritime construction. Estimates are available for some commonly used preservatives, but these vary widely. Though variable, these measurements suggest that emission generally decreases exponentially with time. Part of the variation is due to differences in methodology employed. Physical and chemical characteristics of the seawater used (e.g. temperature, salinity, pH and oxygen content) affect emission rate. So too do the specifics of the treatment process especially the preservative formulation used, and pre- and post-treatment handling of the wood. The nature of the treated wood samples is also important, with misleadingly high estimates being obtained from samples with unrepresentatively high proportions of cross-cut surfaces. A suggested strategy for developing an informative and standardised methodology is discussed. To form useful models of impacts of leaching, emission rates need to be considered in conjunction with site-specific information regarding a) water exchange rates between the area where leaching occurs and the sea, and b) the extent of partitioning of leachate between the water column, biota and sediment. The risk of environmental impact may be reduced by modification to treatment procedures and by careful planning of installation.
S M Cragg, C J Brown, R A Albuquerque, R A Eaton
Quantitative determination of Chromium: A comparison of three instruments
1995 - IRG/WP 95-50053
A comparison is made between three instruments for measuring levels of chromium in the leachate of copper-chrome-arsenic (CCA) treated timber. These include an atomic absorption spectrophotometer, an inductively coupled plasma spectrometer and the RQflexâ. The RQflexâ is a new hand-held instrument which measures chromium by dipping a ReflectoquantÒ strip into the leachate and inserting the strip into the RQflexâ. Readings are determined reflectometrically following a reaction between chrome and the Reflectoquantâ strip. It provides an inexpensive and quick technique which is used in this paper to determine the degree of preservative fixation prior to the removal of CCA treated timber from drip pads of wood treatment sites. The results indicate that RQflexâ is a suitable instrument for the rapid assessment of chromium levels in rain wash off from treated timber. A comparison is given of the economics and accuracy of the instruments for measuring chromium.
S Walley, P R S Cobham, P Vinden
Environmental impact of CCA poles in service
1997 - IRG/WP 97-50087
Soil samples from different depths and distances from CCA treated utility poles in Canada were analyzed for copper, chromium and arsenic content for a number of soil types, two wood species red pine (Pinus resinosa) and jack pine (P. banksiana) and different pole ages in service. A limited number of poles were equipped with water traps to collect rain water that dripped down the poles and where sufficient ground water was present, ground water samples from next to the pole were analyzed. The level of soil contamination dropped rapidly with distance from the pole, with soil levels approaching background levels within 0.25 from the pole. Generally, copper levels (above background) were highest, followed by arsenic and chromium, consistent with the known relative leaching tendencies of the three elements. Contaminant levels increased with age of the pole in service and were generally highest in wet organic soils, followed by sand loam soils and clay soils. Soil concentrations were highest at the ground line, adjacent to the poles. This suggested that a large source of the soil contamination was contaminated rain water that ran down the pole. Rain water trapped from the pole surfaces during rain events had significant concentrations of all three elements. There was no obvious drop in contaminant content in water that dripped down the poles with age of the poles. Ground water samples from next to the poles occasionally had detectable CCA components above aquatic and drinking water guidelines.
P A Cooper, Y T Ung, J-P Aucoin
Trends in environmental management in industry. Implications for wood preservation activities
1993 - IRG/WP 93-50001-34
J A De Larderel
A review of environmental emissions from building and construction materials in comparison with preserved wood
2005 - IRG/WP 05-50224-11
A review of the public domain literature concerning emissions to the environment from materials which are used in the construction of buildings (e.g. Concrete, Asphalt, Galvanised Steel), in comparison with preserved wood, and a review of the approaches taken by the construction sector in assessing the risk from environmental emissions, in comparison with the approaches taken by the wood preservation sector.
E F Baines
Restrictions or environmental taxes as regulatory means - How will they influence the use of pressure treated wood?
1998 - IRG/WP 98-50101-28
In all the Nordic countries except Norway, we have environmental restrictions on the use of pressure treated wood. In Norway we expect environmental taxes on a large number of various products in 1998/99 - probably also pressure treated wood with one or more of the heavy metals copper, chromium and arsenic. The paper will discuss how this can influence the use of pressure treated wood and cause a changes to other materials in the Nordic countries.
F G Evans
Fully impregnated poles for a minimum environmental impact: Eucalyptus poles
2005 - IRG/WP 05-50224-24
The classical processes for preservation of wooden poles (vacuum-pressure and Boucherie processes) allow the impregnation of the sapwood only. The new radial-axial injection process has been applied to Eucalyptus poles, and has led to impregnation of both sapwood and heartwood. Further more; preserving product is injected both through the groundline area and through the bott end. This allows the two entrances to benefit from a very high retention of antiseptic.
An introduction to environmental aspects of groundwater arsenic and CCA treated wood poles in Bangladesh
1997 - IRG/WP 97-50081
The environment comprises biosphere, lithosphere, atmosphere and hydrosphere. Therefore, environmental science is a multi-disciplinary study, includes life sciences, physical sciences, chemical sciences, geology, geography, meteorology, forestry, agriculture, soil science, hydrology, ecology, public health, engineering etc. Tremendous industrial and mining activities, deforestation and population explosion are threatening the very existence of life on earth.Groundwater is used for irrigation, drinking and other domestic purposes where other sources of water are not plenty. Groundwater contain different metals resulting from soluble minerals, deposited in ground during its origin. Thus concentration of metals in surface soils and water are increased day by day by lifting of groundwater. Surface soils and water also receive metals from industries and mines and as a result of multipurpose use of products from those. Deforestation is controlled by plantation and preservation of forest products by different wood preservatives. Recently groundwater in some underground rocks of Tertiary and Quarternary age in Bangladesh is very often known to contain arsenic (As) above permissible limits . On the other hand chromated copper arsenate (CCA) impregnated wooden poles has been used for rural electrification in Bangladesh since 1979. It is an attempt to find out through research and review of literatures that whether the groundwater As is contaminatable from As used in wood poles and whether the components of CCA cause environmental problems. Possible way of purification of arsenic containing groundwater for drinking have been suggested.
A K Lahiry
Wood preservatives ecotoxicology on Gammarus pulex (L.) - toward an environmental monitoring method and a getting rid of pollution process
2005 - IRG/WP 05-50224-9
Wood preservatives can have a strong impact on freshwater invertebrates when used close to aquatic ecosystems. It has been reported in Jura that different arthropod taxa, specially crustaceans, have disappeared along several kilometers downstream from factories using insecticides and fungicides as wood preservatives. The crustacean Gammarus pulex (L.) is a relevant bioindicator to characterize the impact of wood preservatives on freshwater community. It presents a high sensitivity to wood preservatives but a relative tolerance to organic and nutrimental pollution. This abundant and ubiquitous crustacean has a key role in numerous aquatic ecosystems particularly in the decomposition of cellulose and as a prey for several fish species susceptible to be eaten by humans. In this study, we aim on the one hand to determine the adsorption capacity of different substrates of propiconazole, a fungicide widely used in the wood treatment, and on the other, to evaluate the toxicity of wood preservatives for G. pulex in controlled conditions. We hypothesize that the fungicide toxicity may be influenced by different types of substrate used in the test containers, i.e., coarse organic matter and gravel. These results should allow us to go, firstly toward the elaboration of sensors in order to detect product emissions in the aquatic environment, and secondly toward a depuration process in order to decrease the impact on the aquatic communities. These experiments should also allow us to develop a new biological monitoring method for the assessment of the impact of wood preservation on the aquatic ecosystems.
O Adam, F Degiorgi, G Crini, P-M Badot
Framework document for an international code of good practices for wood preservation and wood protection (anti-sapstain) facilities
1992 - IRG/WP 92-3683
At the Kyoto meeting, the Health & Safety committee agreed to form a task force to prepare a global plan for writing a code of good practices (Code) for wood protection and preservation facilities (Doc. No. IRG/WP/3681). The Canadian document had been presented to the IRG group earlier (Doc. No. IRG/WP/3447) and similar documents were solicited from other countries for preparing a framework document to assist in the task. Documents were received from Germany, France, UK, and Sweden. These documents provided information on similar efforts toward establishing a Code in those countries. The guiding principles for preparing the Code will be to reduce or eliminate the releases of preservative/anti-sapstain chemicals in the environment and to minimize the workers' exposure to these chemicals for their health and safety. The recommended practices should be based on the current knowledge of existing technology and the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the chemicals. Cooperation of all stakeholders, that is, industry, chemical supliers, regulatory bodies, workers, and other interest groups, in the preparation and approval of the Code should be sought to increase its credibility, usefulness, and effeness. It is proposed to develop a model Code which can be adopted in whole or with modifications in any country, reflecting the site-specific conditions, legislation, and the state of technological sophistication in the industry. The work to date has been conducted ad hoc with the cooperation of Dr. Peek (Germany), Monsieur Ozanne (France), and Dr. Chris Coggins (UK), and the authors acknowledge their assistance in supplying the documents. Based on the available information, it is suggested that the enclosed table of contents be used in the preparation of the framework document for the Code. A task force will be formed to prepare and present the final Code at the next meeting.
V N P Mathur, G Das
Comprehensive Environmental Glossary
2014 - IRG/WP 14-50306
Glossary of terms relating to the environment
A K Lahiry, T Lahiry
An appraisal of methods for environmental testing of leachates from salt-treated wood (2)
1998 - IRG/WP 98-50110
For wood preservatives for use in hazard class 4 information on the ecotoxicity of preservatives and ingredients as well as on the effect of losses from impregnated timber is needed for a proper environmental risk assessment. In the evaluation of a suitable test procedure the leaching behaviour of copper-based formulations was studied using analytical and ecotoxicological test methodology. These studies included an analytical comparison of end grain sealed and not sealed wood blocks. Using sensitive bioindicators in ecotoxicological studies, real effects of the leachates gained from EN 84 were measured. The possibility to use a laboratory test procedure based on the leaching according to EN 84 is shown and discussed for the risk assessment of treated timber.
H W Wegen, A Platen, G M F Van Eetvelde, M Stevens