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Chinese Drywall Suspicions Confirmed By EPA Tests

Posted by Jane Akre
Wednesday, May 20, 2009 1:04 PM EST
Category: Major Medical, Protecting Your Family
Tags: Chinese-made Drywall, EPA, CPSC, Lennar Homes, Sulfur, Strontium, Wallboard, Plasterboard, China, Defective Products, Sen. Nelson

EPA confirms compounds in China-made wallboard differ from U.S. variety.
Corrosion inside Chinese-wallboard home  

EPA Tests Drywall


 IMAGE SOURCE: Wikimedia Commons/ Effects of Chinese drywall/ author: Chinese Drywall  


Consumers who have complained about a rotten-egg odor emitting from their drywall have had their suspicions confirmed. 

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) tests of drywall made in China confirm it contains sulfur, not found in U.S. drywall, in addition to the metallic element, strontium, at ten times the level of domestic drywall.  The EPA tests also found two compounds generally found in acrylic paint.

Sen. Bill Nelson, a Florida Democrat, and Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu requested the EPA conduct tests after complaints from hundreds of homeowners who say their homes have an odor and that wiring, jewelry, and mirrors inside their homes are corroding. Some have had to move out complaining of health problems.

Sen. Nelson says in a press release, “We’ve got the what, and now we need the why and how do we fix it?   In the end, I think all this stuff is going to have to be ripped out.”

That means ripping out the walls of many Florida homes built between 2004 and 2008 when there was a shortage of domestic plasterboard.   There are upwards of 36,000 homes in Florida effected and as many as 100,000 homes nationwide including Louisiana, Virginia, Alabama, Mississippi, and California. 

Nelson is calling on the EPA to set standards for states to test air quality inside homes made with imported drywall. Those standards should be established by the end of June, according to the Miami Herald. 

Sens. Nelson and Landrieu have called for a nationwide investigation and a ban on Chinese-made drywall, much of which was used in post-Hurricane Katrina construction.   

The Florida Department of Health (DOH) has reports from nearly 400 individuals, one of whom will testify Thursday at a Senate Subcommittee hearing on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance which is investigating.     

Sen. Nelson has been focusing on a change at the helm of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) after what he calls its slow reaction to and investigation of Chinese-made drywall.  

Last week the White House announced it was replacing chair, Nancy Nord, with a former state education commissioner from South Carolina. 

A number of class-action lawsuits are now pending against builders and Chinese drywall manufacturers for failing to follow quality control.

Lennar Corporation, a Miami-based homebuilder since 1954, is suing manufacturers, suppliers, and installers who helped build homes with the sulfur-smelling wallboard, according to the Sarasota Herald Tribune. #

1 Comment

Posted by Gerry McGill
Thursday, May 21, 2009 10:52 AM EST

Democratic Senators Bill Nelson of Florida and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana attached a $2,000,000 measure to a supplemental spending bill now being debated in Congress to pay for additional testing on Chinese drywall. Most of the money would go to the Environmental Protection Agency. A Senate panel will hold a hearing Thursday on the issue.

Comments for this article are closed.

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