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CANADIAN & US SKI / SNOWBOARD ASSOCIATIONS FORM NORTH AMERICAN FLUOROCARBON-FREE POLICY WORKING GROUP

June 17, 2020


 VANCOUVER, B.C. – National Governing Bodies and National Sport Organizations (NGB/NSOs), and snow sport organizations from the United States and Canada today are announcing the formation of a Fluorocarbon Free Policy Working Group.
 
With representation from U.S. Ski & Snowboard, USA Nordic, U.S. Biathlon, U.S. Paralympics Nordic Skiing, U.S. Paralympics Alpine Skiing, U.S. Paralympics Snowboarding, Alpine Canada, Canada Snowboard, Freestyle Canada, Nordiq Canada, Biathlon Canada, Nordic Combined Canada, Ski Jumping Canada and industry wax representatives, the working group is tasked with setting policy to eliminate the use of fluorinated ski wax from all sanctioned levels of snow sports competition in North America beginning with the 2020-21 season. 
 
In 2019, the International Ski Federation (FIS) and International Biathlon Union (IBU) decided that the use of fluorinated ski and snowboard wax will be banned for all FIS and IBU disciplines beginning with the upcoming 2020-21 season. In addition, U.S. Ski & Snowboard voted to eliminate the use of fluorinated ski and snowboard wax from all levels of competition at its May 2020 meeting. The Canadian Ski Association (CSA) has adopted the FIS Council Ruling and is extending it to all programs that fall under its authority. 
 
Fluorinated wax, and the raw perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) compounds that make up these wax products, have been scientifically studied for their negative environmental and health impacts. In the United States, many of the compounds found in fluorinated wax products contain ingredients listed in the Toxic Substances Control Act. In July 2020 the European Chemicals Agency will ban the sale, manufacture, and import of all products containing PFOAs.
 
The Fluorocarbon Free Policy Working Group began meeting on a regular basis to facilitate the many facets of developing policy and rules that will harmonize all levels of domestic competition and training with FIS and IBU rules and regulations, and will lead to a complete ban of fluorinated wax products at all levels of sanctioned competition. The Working Group is committed to:
 

  • Asking manufacturers to work toward providing a list of waxes where the manufacturer represents that the wax is free of fluorinated products 
  • Working with FIS and the IBU to coordinate the testing process and thresholds below the World Championships/World Cup level
  • Establishing rules, deterrents, and appeals processes
  • Establishing clear and concise stakeholder communications

 
While key questions remain, including testing, enforcement, and ultimately sanctions for using fluorinated products, all participating NGBs in the United States and NSOs in Canada are fully committed to banning the use of fluorinated wax from all levels of sanctioned snow sports competition starting with the 2020-21 ski and snowboard season.
 
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About U.S. Ski & Snowboard
U.S. Ski & Snowboard is the Olympic National Governing Body (NGB) of ski and snowboard sports in the USA, based in Park City, Utah. Tracing its roots directly back to 1905, the organization represents nearly 200 elite skiers and snowboarders in 2020, competing in seven teams; alpine, cross country, freeski, freestyle, snowboard, nordic combined and ski jumping. In addition to the elite teams, U.S. Ski & Snowboard also provides leadership and direction for tens of thousands of young skiers and snowboarders across the USA, encouraging and supporting them in achieving excellence. By empowering national teams, clubs, coaches, parents, officials, volunteers and fans, U.S. Ski & Snowboard is committed to the progression of its sports, athlete success and the value of team. For more information, visit www.usskiandsnowboard.org 
 
 
About Canada Snowboard
Canada Snowboard is the national governing body for snowboarding in Canada. With the support of valued corporate partners like Burton Snowboards and Mazda Canada, along with the Government of Canada, Own the Podium and the Canadian Olympic Committee; Canada Snowboard is committed to high performance excellence in FIS World Cup, World Championships, World Snowboard Tour and Olympic Winter Games competition. Canada Snowboard also provides a wide range of programs and support services based on established principles of long-term athlete development. For more information on the services and programs offered by Canada Snowboard, visit: www.canadasnowboard.ca Follow Canada Snowboard across all of our media channels to stay up to date with snowboarding in Canada. www.canadasnowboard.ca and follow us on Instagram @canadasnowboardteam@canadasnowboard and @elleboardfacebook.com/@canadasnowboardtwitter.com/CanadaSnowboard and on the home of snowboarding in Canada www.canadasnowboard.ca
 
 
FOR TECHNICAL INFORMATION CONTACT:
Blake Lewis
Lead Technician - SnowboardCross National Team

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