The European Union’s restriction on inorganic ammonium salts in cellulose insulation mixtures and articles was published in the Official Journal on 24 June 2016 as Regulation (EU) 2016/1017, amended Annex XVII to REACH regulation as a newly added entry – Entry 65.
The new restriction on inorganic ammonium salts is only limited to cellulose insulation mixtures and articles. The use of ammonium salts in any other type of insulation, any other mixture or article is not covered by this restriction. This new restriction sets a 2-year transition period, and will apply from 14 July 2018.
The ammonium salts are used as additives in the cellulose insulation for their flame retardant properties. The cellulose insulation is used in wall and roof cavities (attic) to separate thermally and acoustically the inside and the outside of the building. Under certain conditions (especially of humidity), the ammonium salts in the cellulose insulation may lead to ammonia emission, which can cause the irritation of the eyes, cough, nasal irritation, irritation of the pharynx, other respiratory signs (difficulty in breathing, bronchiolitis) and bronchospasm.
The table below shows the summary of the restriction on inorganic ammonium salts in cellulose insulation mixtures and articles.
Inorganic ammonium salts
Cellulose insulation mixtures and articles
Emission of ammonia: < 3 ppm by volume (2.12 mg/m3)
Cellulose insulation mixtures intended to be used solely for the production of cellulose insulation articles, or to the use of those mixtures in the production of cellulose insulation articles.