Michel Cassart: polystyrene insulation (EPS) offers high performance insulation for buildings, reducing energy consumption and greenhouse emissions. Respect of building safety regulation fire standards is imperative. The industry is currently changing to new flame retardant solutions, because of the ban of HBCD under EU chemical regulation REACH.
New flame retardant solutions, whatever family of chemistry is used, must respect the environment, ensuring low losses from the product and no bioaccumulation. Polymer and large-molecule FRs are one solution, as may also be reactive FRs, but in both cases there are challenges with cost, supply availability and processing characteristics. Bio-sourced materials are an important development for Total, as an environmental ‘plus’, but need to ensure performance, respect fire safety standards, and not be more expensive.