Silicones give qualities to an enormous range of products that enhance the enjoyment, quality and safety of modern life. We need to be sure, however, that these benefits are not gained at the expense of the natural world.
Silicone producers together form a major sector of the global economy. As such, protecting wildlife and the natural environment is a priority. The members of CES fully research and test all our products and share results with national and international regulators. On this basis we are convinced that our products are safe when used as intended.
Silicones in the Environment
There are several classes of silicones that may potentially be found in the environment on account of their applications, but the two principal groups are volatile methylsiloxanes (VMS) and polydimethylsiloxanes (PDMS).
The picture below summarises our knowledge on their behaviour in the main environmental compartments of water, sediment, soil and air.
Click on soil, air, water and sediments to get more information
Monitoring and Testing
Environmental monitoring and testing are central to the commitment of the silicone industry to environmental protection. Via such programmes, the silicone industry identifies how its products enter and leave the environment, quantifies exposure levels and evaluates possible risks. They also help to highlight further research requirements.
An in-depth understanding of the fate and effects of substances in the environment depends on high quality analysis and accurate test results that deliver consistent and comparable data. To ensure such information, CES has developed test methods to extract and detect silicones in samples collected from the environment. In most cases silicones are absent from samples.