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Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP)

Substitutes in Sterilants

Sterilants kill microorganisms on medical equipment and devices. SNAP reviews alternatives used for sterilizing temperature- and moisture-sensitive medical devices and supplies (e.g., endoscopes), which historically used blends of 88 percent CFC-12 and 12 percent ethylene oxide (i.e., “12/88”). In this non-flammable blend, ethylene oxide sterilizes the equipment and CFC-12 is a diluent solvent.

Lists of acceptableHelpacceptableThis designation means that a substitute may be used, without restriction, to replace the relevant ODS within the end-use specified. For example, HCFC-22 is an acceptable substitute for R-502 in industrial process refrigeration. Note that all SNAP determinations apply to the use of a specific product as a substitute for a specific ODS in a specific end-use. and UnacceptableHelpUnacceptableThis designation means that it is illegal to use a product as a substitute for an ODS in a specific end-use. For example, HCFC-141b is an unacceptable substitute for CFC-11 in building chillers. Note that all SNAP determinations apply to the use of a specific product as a substitute for a specific ODS in a specific end-use. substitutes are updated several times each year. The list of substitutes is shown below.

Note: SNAP-related information published in the Federal Register takes precedence over all information on this page.

             
Substitute ODPHelpODPA number that refers to the amount of ozone depletion caused by a substance. The ODP is the ratio of the impact on ozone of a chemical compared to the impact of a similar mass of CFC-11. Thus, the ODP of CFC-11 is defined to be 1.0. Other CFCs and HCFCs have ODPs that range from 0.01 to 1.0. The halons have ODPs ranging up to 10. Carbon tetrachloride has an ODP of 1.2, and methyl chloroform's ODP is 0.11. HFCs have zero ODP because they do not contain chlorine. A table of all ozone-depleting substances (http://www.epa.gov/ozone/science/ods/index.html) shows their ODPs, GWPs, and CAS numbers. GWPHelpGWPThe index used to translate the level of emissions of various gases into a common measure in order to compare the relative radiative forcing of different gases without directly calculating the changes in atmospheric concentrations. GWPs are calculated as the ratio of the radiative forcing that would result from the emissions of one kilogram of a greenhouse gas to that from the emission of one kilogram of carbon dioxide over a period of time (usually 100 years). Gases involved in complex atmospheric chemical processes have not been assigned GWPs. See lifetime. Flamable SNAP Listing Date Listing Status Further Information
[HCFC Blend] A/EtO 0 9,000 no August 26, 1994 Acceptable This blend contains HCFC-124, an ozone depleting substance; it should be use to sterilize only equipment that cannot be sterilized using other alternatives such as steam or CO2/EtO blends. As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. This agent is FIFRA Registered.
Blends containing HCFC-22 >0 N/A no July 20, 2015 Unacceptable as of September 18, 2015  
CO2/EtO 0 1 no March 18, 1994;
June 16, 2010
Acceptable CO2/EtO blends can serve as drop-in replacements to 12/88 in some but not in all existing equipment because they require a higher operating pressure. As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. This agent is FIFRA registered.
HCFC-124 / EtO 0.022 609 no March 18, 1994 Acceptable HCFC-124 is an ozone depleting substance; it should be used to sterilize only equipment that cannot be sterilized using other alternatives such as steam or CO2/EtO blends. As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. This agent is FIFRA registered.
Hydrogen Peroxide Gas Plasma Systems 0 N/A no July 28, 1995;
June 16, 2010
Acceptable  
IoGasTM Sterilant Blend 1 (blend of CF3I/CO2/EtO) <0.001 <1 no October 1, 2004 Acceptable As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. FIFRA registration of this agent is pending.
IoGasTM Sterilant Blend 3 (blend of CF3I/CO2/EtO) <0.001 <1 no October 1, 2004 Acceptable As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. FIFRA registration of this agent is pending.
IoGasTM Sterilant Blend 6 (blend of CF3I/CO2/EtO) <0.001 <1 no October 1, 2004 Acceptable As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA. FIFRA registration of this agent is pending.
Peroxyacetic Acid/Hydrogen Peroxide Gas Plasma Systems 0 N/A yes July 28, 1995;
June 16, 2010
Acceptable This agent is FIFRA registered.
Pure EtO 0 1 yes March 18, 1994;
June 16, 2010
Acceptable EtO is a toxic, carcinogenic substance and is considered a hazardous air pollutant. Potential exposures of the general population to EtO releases can be limited either through the use of catalytic converters which convert waste EtO into CO2 and water, or through the use of acid water scrubbers which convert waste EtO into ethylene glycol. Must be used in accordance with manufacturer recommendations to address flammability concerns. Must be used in accordance with OSHA standards to limit occupational exposures. As a HAP, use of EtO must comply with Title III of the CAA.
Steam 0 N/A no March 18, 1994;
June 16, 2010
Acceptable Applicable only to devices resistant to heat and moisture.
The Mini-Max Cleaner® 0 N/A no September 28, 2006 Acceptable  
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