The Swedish government is to set up a 'Centre for Chemical Substitution' that it says will help producers and consumers to eliminate harmful chemicals and use environmentally-friendly alternatives instead. 

The Centre, which will be located in Stockholm, will present commercially available chemical solutions as alternatives to various toxic chemicals. And it has recognised Swedish clean technology firm OrganoClick as a company that has such a solution with its OrganoTex fluorocarbon-free water repellent fabric treatment.

"There are often environmentally-friendly alternatives to a lot of toxic chemicals but they do not live up to the same functional standards," said Mårten Hellberg CEO at OrganoClick. "We want to offer environmentally-friendly chemical products and materials that are as good, or better, function as the toxic chemicals. Products must also be manufactured cost-effectively so that they can be sold at a price that makes sense to make an impact with consumers." 

The Swedish Minister for the Environment, Åsa Romson, highlighted perfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS) such as fluorocarbons as some of the most commonly-known dangerous chemicals being targeted by the new centre. Common in clothing and textiles, studies have found them to impact the reproductive, immune and endocrine systems.

"This is no longer a utopia, but there are plenty of eco-friendly options on the market already, which provide at least as good functionality and [are] also cost effective. So there are no longer any excuses for industries not to choose environmentally friendly alternatives," the Ministry said.