Expatica news

‘Too much formaldehyde’ in Belgian homes

29 March 2005

BRUSSELS – Levels of formaldehyde exceed World Health Organisation (WHO) limits in 91 percent of Belgian homes, one of the country’s leading consumer watchdogs claimed on Tuesday.

Formaldehyde can cause cancers in sufficiently high concentrations and Test Achats says more should be done to control levels of the gas in Belgian homes.

The gas is used in the fabrication of a large number of household products including paper, cosmetics, detergents, kitchenware and bathroom utensils.

Test Achats studied amounts of formaldehyde in 95 Belgian houses and in 72 percent of cases it found concentrations of the gas were higher than 10 milligrammes per cubic metre – the maximum level advised by the WHO.

The organisation said levels of the gas were likely to be particularly high in poorly ventilated and overly hot rooms.

Test Achats wants all of Belgium’s governments to set clear rules on formaldehyde levels.

At present only the Flemish administration has regulations governing concentrations of the gas.

[Copyright Expatica 2005]

Subject: Belgian news