Industrial Chemicals – The chemical industry includes industries that manufacture industrial chemicals. Central to our modern economy, it transforms raw resources into various other goods. The chemicals industry includes some overlap since some chemical industries also produce other chemicals and plastics. This is the reason that when one chemical industry begins to decline, others tend to pick up the slack, or vice versa. This is also why a company whose major activity is chemical manufacturing can sometimes be hurt by a competitor with a more focused chemical business.
In the past, industrial chemicals were made primarily from coal, oil, gas and wood. As industrialization continued, the industries began turning to iron and steel for making many of their chemicals. However, these chemical mixtures often proved to be flammable, so they were relegated to use in air-cooled laboratories and production units, rather than in open-air facilities such as power plants and factories. Today, industrial chemicals are mostly made from toxic chemicals produced during the combustion of various fuels such as petrol, diesel, natural gas, coal, wood, limestone and many others.
Among the most hazardous of the industrial chemicals, the most dangerous are the chlorinated solvents (also known as THMs). These chemicals have been shown to cause cancer in workers who are employed in industrial settings where they are used; and they have been found in drinking water in several countries. Other commonly used chemicals include nitrogen oxides, sulfuric acid and chlorine compounds. All of these chemicals are released into the environment through industrial processes, and the effects on the environment vary according to their composition.