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Low VOC Interior Paint and Other Healthy Alternative Paints


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Green Seal Standard GS-11 for Low Odor or Low VOC Paint
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Green Seal® Logo

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The Green Seal organization sets much more stringent standards than the EPA for acceptable VOC levels in paint. For interior flat paint, the EPA allows levels of 250 grams per liter (g/L) while Green Seal allows only 50 g/L.

The other important benefit is that Green Seal prevents the use of the following nasty chemicals in the production of the paint:

  • Halomethanes (methylene chloride)
  • Chlorinated ethanes (1,1,1-trichloroethane)
  • Aromatic solvents (benzene, toluene (methylbenzene), ethylbenzene)
  • Chlorinated ethylenes (vinyl chloride)
  • Polynuclear aromatics (naphthalene)
  • Chlorobenzenes (1,2-dichlorobenzene)
  • Phthalate esters (di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, butyl benzyl phthalate, di-n-butyl phthalate, di-n-octyl phthalate, diethyl phthalate, dimethyl phthalate)
  • Miscellaneous semi-volatile organics (isophorone)
  • Heavy metals and their compounds (antimony, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, lead, mercury)
  • Preservatives (formaldehyde)
  • Ketones (methyl ethyl ketone, methyl isobutyl ketone)
  • Miscellaneous volatile organics (acrolein, acrylonitrile)
You'll want to make sure that whatever paint you buy has the Green Seal "mark of environmental responsibility" or states that it meets Green Seal Standard GS-11.

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