Why highlight these chemicals?
Intel New Mexico uses and emits a wide variety of chemicals, many of which are toxic and present a danger to human health and to the environment. CAFA-now leadership has added this Chemical-of-the-Month feature to our website because we believe that those living near the Intel plant need to know as much as possible about individual chemicals that Intel emits. Once readers have reviewed the information on this site, we suggest that they do additional research to learn more about these chemicals.
Material for each Chemical of the Month is gleaned from reliable sources such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and the sources are noted. In some instances, this material will mention that among the uses of the chemical being described is the process of manufacturing computer chips or microprocessors. In others, this is not mentioned but nevertheless, the chemical in question is (or has been) used by Intel and most likely is employed as a solvent.
Much of the data about the impact of toxic chemicals on human health come from studies of occupational exposure where concentrations are substantially higher than would normally be encountered outside industrial facilities, e.g., in residential neighborhoods. So too, many of the determinations of safe concentrations of these chemicals are either based on or influenced by studies in occupational settings, and very little data are available about the impact of exposure to concentrations below the EPA-published safe levels such as would be encountered in non-occupational (e.g., residential) settings. Recently though, more work is being done to examine the potential risk of constant exposure to levels of toxic chemicals well below the EPA standards