February 22, 2024

A new report by environmental health groups EcoWaste Coalition and International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN) finds spray paints with dangerous lead concentrations on sale in the Philippines in violation of the country’s law banning lead in paints.
Among those found to contain high levels of lead are four samples of imported Parlux and Yandy spray paints bought from retail stores in Baguio City with lead content way above the 90 ppm limit for lead under DENR Administrative Order 2013-24 or the Chemical Control Order for Lead and Lead Compounds.
A yellow Yandy spray paint had 47,500 ppm of lead and its green variant had 26,500 ppm. A green Parlux spray paint had 34,500 ppm of lead and its red variant had 1,700 ppm.
The report “Lead in Spray Paints for Consumer Use in the Philippines” provides the first publicly available data on the lead content of paints in aerosol cans sold in the country, which are typically used as a touch-up paint for appliances and cars, as a material for school projects, and as a convenient stuff for sprucing up accessories and decors.
While the hazards of spray paint fumes due to their volatile organic compound (VOC) ingredients like acetone, toluene and xylene, which can be directly inhaled, are known, studies had barely paid attention to lead lurking in such paints, the groups noted.
The report shows that out of 87 analyzed spray paints for consumer or general use, 37 samples exceeded the total lead content limit above 90 ppm, of which 29 had dangerous lead concentrations topping 10,000 ppm. 
The samples were obtained from hardware stores, home improvement centers, general merchandise marts, school and office supplies shops in 20 cities and one municipality in Metro Manila and various parts of Luzon, including Baguio City. SGS Philippines conducted the laboratory tests.
As confirmed by the Philippine Association of Paint Manufacturers (PAPM) with the EcoWaste Coalition and IPEN, none of the spray paints analyzed in the study was produced locally by its affiliated companies.  
Exposure to lead, the groups pointed out, can seriously damage the brain. When a child is exposed to lead, the harm to her or his developing brain and nervous system makes it more like that the child will have difficulties in school and engage in impulsive and violent behavior. 
Lead exposure in children is also linked to increased rates of hyperactivity, inattentiveness, failure to graduate from high school, conduct disorder, juvenile delinquency, drug use and incarceration.
Lead exposure impacts on children continue throughout life and have a long-term impact on a child’s work performance and are related to decreased economic success. – Press release