- ASHTA uses mercury as an electrical conductor and catalyst in an enclosed process to manufacture chlorine and potassium hydroxide – products that are used in many applications and industries including water treatment, pharmaceuticals, pigments, plastics, metals processing, fertilizers, batteries, cleaners, de-icer, and various potassium based chemicals. The mercury in the process is continuously recycled and reused rather than being consumed or released.
- According to a recent joint study released in 2008 by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme, (AMAP), approximately fifteen million pounds of mercury is released to the atmosphere annually. The chart on this page shows the source and the extent of those emissions.
- Based on the above data and the environmental controls ASHTA has put into place, ASHTA’s mercury emissions are indeed miniscule.
This study shows that the great majority of mercury in the environment would be there even if man had never walked the earth. The amount of mercury that mankind does release to the environment is primarily due to the burning of coal and other fossil fuels. Only when we no longer depend on coal, oil or wood to power and warm our lives can we hope to have even a minor impact on the amount of mercury in the environment.
We are keenly aware of the effects of mercury on human and animal health and we take our role of safeguarding the environment very seriously. We want you as our neighbors to know that the trace amount of mercury that leaves our site in product, in the air, or in rainwater, in no way poses any threat to you, your family, or the earth at large.
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We know how important the protection of the environment is to you, your family, and your community. We care as deeply as you do and are totally committed to keeping our neighbors and our community safe.
We fully comprehend and embrace our enormous responsibility for the safety, health, and wellbeing of our employees, our customers, and the general public.
This commitment to the environment is evidenced not only in our Mission Statement, but also with the fact that we are constantly and consistently in full compliance with all operating and environmental permits issued to us by the Ohio EPA, the US EPA, and other regulatory agencies. Over and above our strict adherence to these regulatory requirements, we relentlessly strive to employ and adopt extraordinary measures to assure the environmental security of our operations, our products, and our distribution networks.
You can count on ASHTA safeguarding our environment 24/7.
The Truth about Mercury
You may have some questions or concerns about the fact that ASHTA utilizes mercury in our manufacturing process. We certainly understand your concerns and welcome the opportunity to answer your questions.
- Mercury is a naturally occurring element which is found everywhere in the environment and is listed along with hydrogen, oxygen, carbon,
uranium, iodine and all the other naturally occurring elements on the Periodic Table of Elements we learned about back in school. It is not man-made and can never be totally eliminated from the environment because most of the mercury found in the environment comes from volcanoes, evaporation from oceans, forest fires and other NATURAL processes.
- The balance is naturally occurring mercury which is liberated to the environment as a result of mankind’s industrial activities such as gold mining, the burning of fossil fuels (especially coal to generate electricity) and other industrial applications.