Michael Edelman, CEO of cadmium-free quantum dots producer Nanoco, has criticised the European Commission’s decision to grant a Restriction on Hazardous Substances (RoHS) exemption to cadmium-containing QDs (EC Affirms Environmental Benefit of Cadmium-Based Quantum Dots). The exemption lasts until mid-2018.
According to Edelman, the EU is acting under pressure from American companies, working with Chinese manufacturers, who are seeking to import their components into Europe.
Speaking to The Business Desk, Edelman said, “[Our customers] have already decided to remain cadmium free because it is the responsible thing to do”.
“TVs containing cadmium are not commercially available in Europe”, he continued, “but if the EU relaxes its restrictions it will create a market for something harmful where there was not previously one available… This conflicts with our view and is conflict of the stated objectives of the Restriction of Hazardous Substances. We have invested $50 million into R&D to create cadmium free quantum dots and it would [be] wrong in our view for there to be any relaxation”.
“Should MEPs vote to enact the extension, there is a right to an immediate appeal which we would use if necessary”.
We covered this topic in our SID 2014 report (Display Monitor Vol 21 No 25), where an exemption of cadmium from the latest ROHS release was discussed. The theory is that more cadmium enters the atmosphere as a result of increased use of power by non-QD sets (cadmium is a by-product of coal-burning power stations). (TA)