Emissions of additives from plastics in the societal material stock – a case study for Sweden
Kapitel i bok, 2012

Estimating the size of the problems related to release, fate, exposure and effects from the human use of chemical substances in materials and consumer products is daunting. More than 100,000 chemical substances are in commercial use and a reasonable description of their existence in, and release from, plastic polymers, glues, paints, fibres, lubricants etc. comprise a big challenge. Here we report the initial results from a generic emission model that has been developed and applied to estimate emissions of a set of organic chemicals from products. The scope of the study was to estimate emissions from products containing plastic materials during their average lifetime within the geographical boundaries of Sweden. The results show that approximately 2% of the plastic additives are emitted annually. Plasticisers, flame retardants, organic pigments and stabilizers are the use categories of additives that are emitted in the largest quantities. Until now, the method has only been used to estimate emissions of additives from plastic materials, but it is believed to also be applicable to other materials.

Emission model

Plastic additives


Diffuse emissions



Material stock


Tomas Rydberg

IVL Svenska Miljöinstitutet

Jenny Westerdahl

IVL Svenska Miljöinstitutet

Elisabeth Hallberg

IVL Svenska Miljöinstitutet

Andreas Öman

IVL Svenska Miljöinstitutet

Patrik Andersson

Umeå universitet

Peter Haglund

Umeå universitet

Tomas Holmgren

Umeå universitet

Filippa Fuhrman

Chalmers, Energi och miljö, Environmental Systems Analysis

Sverker Molander

Chalmers, Energi och miljö, Environmental Systems Analysis

Johan Tivander

Chalmers, Energi och miljö, Environmental Systems Analysis

Global Risk-Based Management of Chemical Additives

978-3-642-24875-7 (ISBN)


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