Skip to comments.Clorox To Stop Using Chlorine
Posted on 11/20/2009 7:46:26 AM PST by Zuben Elgenubi
November 9, 2009
Citing a desire to improve security, Clorox says it will stop making its namesake bleach out of chlorine and sodium hydroxide.
Instead, the big household-products company will purchase high-strength bleach of up to 15% concentration and dilute it to household strength of 6%. The company will convert its Fairfield, Calif., plant within the next six months and switch its six other U.S. plants over the coming years.
Clorox announcement came three days before the House of Representatives was set to take up plant security legislation (H.R. 2868) that would require high-risk chemical plants and water-treatment facilities to use safer processes or chemicals.
The environmental group Greenpeace is lauding Clorox for eliminating risk from the use and transport of chlorine. By ending the use of chlorine gas, Clorox also proves that eliminating these risks is both technically feasible and a smart business decision, says Rick Hind, Greenpeaces legislative director.
Greenpeace says it sent a letter to Clorox CEO Don Knauss in February seeking a meeting on the risks related to chlorine gas. The group says it learned of the conversion plan in May during a meeting with Knauss. Greenpeace is now calling on large chemical firms to switch away from chlorine to safer raw materials.
Clorox isnt disclosing the cost of the transition or the companies from which it will buy high-strength bleach. It does say, however, that it expects no chlorine movement in its U.S. supply chain, including to its bleach suppliers. That precludes companies that make bleach out of shipped-in chlorine and sodium hydroxidethe bulk of the industry.
Timothy Maegly, vice president of high-strength bleach maker BleachTech, points out that two other classes of bleach supplier can meet the no-movement condition: chlorine producers such as Olin that make bleach on-site and companies such as BleachTech that make bleach directly from salt without isolating chlorine.
Clorox conversion wont cause a big spike in demand for high-strength bleach, Maegly predicts, but its indicative of the pressures on traditional bleach companies to comply with U.S. plant-security requirements. Homeland Security is already knocking on their door, he says.
I use clorox for a lot of cleaning. How effective will the new product be?
Ok, so Clorox won’t be making the bleach out of chlorine and sodium hydroxide... but it will be buying a 15% concentration bleach and will be diluting it to 6%.
Who is making the 15% bleach? Aren’t they making it with chlorine and sodium hydroxide?
It’s not that Clorox is changing the “recipe”, it’s that they aren’t cooking it in their own kitchen. Whose kitchen is it being cooked in? Mexico? China?
A lot of swimming pool owners now use liquid sodium hypochlorite instead of chlorine gas already as it is so much easier and safer to handle, but the chlorine is still "in there".
I have a feeling it won’t be long before the strongest cleaning ingredient we’ll be able to buy is deionized water.
Lower concentration of active ingredient, you just will use more. But do not count on the price going lower.
Such questions are not allowed. Please turn yourself in for green reeducation.
Next you'll be asking who is making the electricity that goes into electric cars. The nerve!!!!!
I think you’re misreading the numbers.
The way I read it, only the factory processing changes, not the composition of the consumer product.
Sounds good to me. The Germans used chlorine on my granddad in WWI, and I’ve heard gruesome stories of deaths during the manufacture of it, and seen the newscasts and news reports of what happens when a chlorine tanker derails. The gas is bad stuff. Amazing that the air we breath element Oxygen is Chlorine’s chemical twin.
The old good twin, bad twin mythos goes back to the creation of the very elements.
We were definitely germ free, but if dead, who cares??? ;-) I used to tease her that she should have bought stock in Clorox and Scotch Tape. Her gifts were impregnable. There were a lot of frustrated cousins at Christmas and Birthdays in our house — not to mention the neighborhood.
The article doesn’t match the title.
Clorox will still be selling products with chlorine.
They’re just not going to make it domestically.
It sounds to me like they’re going to downsize and import the product...but they’ve issued a press release to make it sound like they’re being “green”. Covering their butts with a green excuse.
Triumph of NIMBYism.
Environmental law is “joint and several” meaning that if the subcontractors violate environmental law, Clorox can be forced to pay for up to 100% of the remediation. They say that there will be no movement of chlorine in the U.S., which means either that they will be diluting it before shipment or buying it outside the U.S. They are clearly not mitigating risk, simply transferring it to entities over which they have less control. If those entities are outside the U.S., there may be a Bhopal in their future.
Environmentalists are pests.
Congress is a hazard.
Prosperity and decline are choices. The American people have spoken and they have chosen decline, lead by the Pelosi, Reid and Obama.
The water purification link wants to put a cookie on my computer. No thanks.
How much harm has been done during shipping of chlorine in comparison with, say, getting out of bed in the morning? Sounds like another law that increases the cost of doing something (making Chlorox in this case) in the name of the environment or safety. It wouldn’t be surprising if Chlorox eventually takes the whole operation to another country.
So, all the Clorox plant will now be doing is diluting someone else’s “Clorox.” So why should I buy Clorox? How could they possibly make a superior product than Brand X? And why is it safer to put all those trucks on the highway with the concentrated bleach, than to package the bleach where it is created? This sounds like Clorox no longer finds the plant operable, and is trying to put an environmental spin on what is essentially going out of the manufacturing business.
LOL! My mother did the same thing.
The only reason I buy Clorox is for the chlorine. If they stop using it, I’ll stop buying it.
I can virtually guarantee you that whatever the alternative, it will result in greater enviromental impact, a reduced standard of living and have a negative impact on health and longevity.
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