Propene (1-Propene)

CAS Registry Number 115-07-1

What is it?

  • Propene is an industrial chemical. It also occurs naturally in the environment.

How is it used?

  • Propene is primarily used as a monomer in plastic production. It is also used to prepare other chemicals, as a fuel additive, a fragrance, or a perfume ingredient.
  • Based on the most recent data, propene is manufactured in Canada and is also imported into Canada.

Why is the Government of Canada assessing it?

  • Prior to the assessment, propene was identified as a potential concern to human health.
  • However, propene was not considered to be a priority for assessment of potential risks to the environment. Regardless, potential environmental effects were also evaluated in this screening assessment.

How is it released to the environment?

  • Propene is a naturally occurring gas that is emitted from many plants, volcanoes, and from incomplete burning of organic matters.
  • Propene may also be released to the environment during industrial activities and in exhaust from older vehicles.

How are Canadians exposed to it?

  • In Canada, exposure of the general population to propene can be expected to occur predominantly through air, including tobacco smoke.

What are the results of the assessment?

  • The Government of Canada has conducted a science-based evaluation of propene, called a screening assessment.
  • Screening assessments address the potential for harm to the general population of Canada and the environment.
  • Hazards related to chemicals used in the workplace should be classified accordingly under the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).
  • Results of the final Screening Assessment indicate that propene is not expected to remain in the environment for a long time or accumulate in organisms.
  • Furthermore, the quantity of propene that may be released to the environment is below the level expected to cause harm to organisms.
  • The Government of Canada has therefore concluded that propene is not entering the environment at levels that constitute a danger to the environment.
  • The Government of Canada has also concluded that propene is not harmful to human health at current levels of exposure.

What is the Government of Canada doing?

  • The final Screening Assessment on Propene was published on September 13, 2014.
  • Based on the conclusion of the final screening assessment, the Government of Canada proposes that no further action be taken on propene.

What can Canadians do?

  • The health risks associated with a chemical depend on the hazard (its potential to cause health effects) and the dose (the amount of chemical to which you are exposed). Propene is not a concern for the environment or human health at current levels of exposure.
  • As a general precaution, Canadians are reminded when using any product to carefully follow any safety warnings and directions and to dispose of the products appropriately.
  • Tobacco smoke is also a source of propene. Canadians are reminded that they should not smoke and should avoid second-hand smoke. For more information about how to quit smoking and how to protect your family from second-hand smoke, check out the Smoking and tobacco website or speak with a doctor.
  • Canadians who may be exposed to propene in the workplace should consult with their employer and occupational health and safety representative about safe handling practices, applicable laws and requirements under the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).

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