PCB Remediation in Calgary
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are industrial chemicals that have formerly been used as coolants and lubricants in transformers, capacitors and other electrical equipment because they are not easily burned and make good insulators. These were later discovered to cause harmful health effects and in 1977 the manufacture, processing, importing and offering for sale of PCBs was prohibited in Canada. Though these items were never actually manufactured in Canada, they were widely used in the county. Some of these products include old fluorescent light fixtures, electrical devices containing PCB capacitors and old microscopes or hydraulic oils.
Items containing PCBs must be disposed of properly. Clean Air Services can provide PCB remediation and PCB disposal in Calgary to rid your home or business of these potentially harmful products. Call us today to learn more.
How Are We Exposed to PCBs?
There are a number of ways that we can come into contact with PCBs. If you want to know if you may have been exposed to PCBs, pay attention to the age of the equipment you are using. Those manufactured before 1979 most likely contain PCBs. Many items were also labelled after the effects were discovered. Look for the old Environment Canada labels that state “Attention PCB.” Some sources of PCB exposure include:
- Home use of old fluorescent lighting fixtures or electrical devices and appliances – Those appliances made 30 or more years ago, such as old television sets or refrigerators, could contain components with PCBs. These appliances can leak small amounts of PCBs into the air when they heat up during operation, and could be a source of skin exposure.
- Contaminated food – The main food sources that contain PCBs are fish, especially sportfish caught in contaminated lakes or rivers. PCBs can also sometimes be found in meat and dairy products.
- Contaminated air or water – Breathing air near hazardous waste sites or drinking contaminated well water could result in PCB exposure.
- Working with PCB transformers, light fixtures and other old electrical devices – Exposure can occur when working on PCB transformers or during accidents, fires or spills involving transformers. Working with fluorescent lights and other old electrical devices can also cause exposure.
How Can PCBs Affect Our Health
The most common health issue caused by exposure to PCBs are skin conditions, such as rashes or acne. Studies of workers exposed to PCB show changes in blood and urine that may indicate liver damage. However, both of these occur only after being exposed to large amounts of PCB. Exposure to the general population, or those who do not regularly encounter the chemical, are not likely to result in these serious symptoms. It is still important to remove items containing PCBs from your home or workplace as extended exposure is still thought to cause health problems. At Clean Air Services, we offer quality PCB removal services in Calgary.
Call the Professionals for PCB Remediation in Calgary
If you believe your home or business may contain items with PCBs, it’s important to get them checked by a professional. At Clean Air Services, we can determine if any of the items are dangerous to your health and perform PCB remediation, PCB removal and PCB disposal in Calgary.