PVC (Vinyl) Products

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When to Use

Avoid PVC products such as: 

  • Fake leather
  • Soft plastic (e.g., shower curtains and office supplies like clear binders, file folders, envelopes, calendars, sheet protectors, badge holders, coated paper clips, chair mats, erasers)
  • Building materials, flooring, carpet backing 
  • Children’s products


Consumer, Industrial

Environmental & Health Information

  • PVC usually contains phthalates as softening agents.  Some phthalates are probable cancer-causing chemicals, disrupt endocrine systems and have reproductive effects - particularly on men.
  • PVC sometimes contains lead, a bioaccumulative heavy metal that can cause reproductive problems, high blood pressure and hypertension, and various nerve disorders.
  • PVC releases cancer-causing dioxins during manufacture and disposal. Dioxins are a group of chemically-related compounds that are persistent environmental pollutants, which accumulate in the fatty tissues of animals. Dioxins can cause a variety of adverse health effects at extremely low doses, including  reproductive and developmental problems,  impaired immune systems, interference with hormones and also cause cancer.
  • PVC is the least recyclable plastic (recycling number 3). (Read more)


Criteria for PVC (Vinyl) Products

Info on this product category: Binders

Criteria for Binders

Guide for City Staff

Citywide Contract

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