PVC Is Evil!

hdpe2-symbolThis was a new learning for me recently.  We used PVC for our sewer and french drain systems without knowing the evils of PVC.   Once we got ourselves educated we quickly moved to have our Rainwater Harvesting and irrigation company to adjust our quote to include using HDPE rather than PVC (in our gutter downspouts, our rainwater harvesting pipes, and our irrigation pipes).  I’m still waiting on the price differential, but will let you know when I get the adjusted bid.

So what’s so wrong with PVC?  According to besafenet.com,

“Our bodies are contaminated with poisonous chemicals released during the PVC lifecycle, such as mercury, dioxins, and phthalates, which may pose irreversible life-long health threats.  When produced or burned, PVC plastic releases dioxins, a group of the most potent synthetic chemicals ever tested, which can cause cancer and harm the immune and reproductive systems.”

While I wasn’t expecting to burn my PVC, the fact that it leaches mercury and dioxins into water and soil makes me never want to touch it again!  AND, PVC can’t be recycled while HDPE can be recycled and is typically made from 50% recycled materials to start with. 

So what are the alternatives?  There are several listed here.   Do your research and avoid PVC!