In July, the EPA released the first part of its Synthetic Turf Field Recycled Tire Crumb Rubber Characterization Final Report. This report is part of a comprehensive series of reports on the effects crumb rubber has on human health in playgrounds and sports fields. The report found “the findings from the report support the premise that while chemicals are present as expected in the tire crumb rubber, human exposure appears to be limited based on what is released into air or simulated biological fluids.” That is because there is a significant difference between the presence of a chemical and the exposure risk to that chemical. The chemicals listed in the report are present in many common consumer products. In fact, many commonly-used recreation surfaces – including soil – are known to possess the very same chemicals as recycled rubber.
While we await the EPA and CDC to finalize this report, we believe that they will come to the same conclusions that over 100 other reports have found – there is no human health risk from recycled rubber.