Cyclododecane, 1,2,5,6,9,10-hexabromo-, also known as hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), is a brominated flame retardant. Brominated flame retardants are organic compounds containing bromine that slow the ignition and spread of fire. The flame retardant HBCD is found primarily in polystyrene foam (over 90% of its use) used as an insulation material in the building industry. There are also a number of other minor uses as a flame retardant, such as in textiles used for upholstered furniture and upholstered seating in transportation, and in wall coverings and draperies. It is also used in some glues, paints, adhesives and polymers contained in electronic equipment.

The final screening assessment report, published on November 12, 2011, concluded that HBCD is entering the environment in a quantity or concentration or under conditions that have or may have an immediate or long-term harmful effect on the environment or its biological diversity (i.e., meets the criteria of section 64(a) of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA)). Furthermore, the available data regarding its persistence and bioaccumulation potential indicate that HBCD satisfies the criteria outlined in the Persistence and Bioaccumulation Regulations, under CEPA, and meets all other criteria to implement virtual elimination. The final screening assessment report concludes that HBCD is not a concern for human health at current levels of exposure.

The Risk Management Approach for HBCD, published on November 12, 2011, outlines the proposed risk management actions. Proposed in the Risk Management Approach, are restrictions on the manufacture, use, sale, offer for sale or import of HBCD and products containing the substance.

The Government's Response to Stakeholder’s Comments regarding the Risk Management Approach for Hexabromocyclododecane and the Consultation Document on the Proposed Risk Management Measure for Hexabromocyclododecane are now available. There is a 60-day public comment period on the Consultation Document from October 3, 2012 to December 2, 2012. Comments received will be considered during the development of the proposed risk management action.

The Regulations Amending the Prohibition of Certain Toxic Substances Regulations, 2012 include controls on HBCD and were published in the Canada Gazette, Part II on October 5, 2016. By January 1, 2017, the manufacture, use, sale, offer for sale or import of HBCD, as well as expanded and extruded foams and intermediary products containing HBCD used in building/construction applications will be prohibited.

In 2013, HBCD was added to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). For information on Canada's international engagement on this substance, please visit Environment and Climate Change Canada's website on the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs).

Sites from international organizations (note: these sites are external to the Government of Canada).

There is more than one CAS number that applies to this group of substances.

Risk Assessment

Risk Management Strategy

Risk Management Tools

Tool(s) developed to manage risks associated with the substance:

Risk Management Supporting Activities

Activities supporting the development or implementation of the risk management tool(s):


Consultation (past and present) on the substance:

Other Information


Chemicals Management Division
Environment and Climate Change Canada
351, St-Joseph Boulevard
Gatineau, Quebec
K1A 0H3

E-mail: ec.interdiction-prohibition.ec@canada.ca

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