By David Reed, UT EditorLondon-Environmental matters and the safe handling of raw materials for making polyurethanes, occupy an ever-increasing part of the management activities in the industry, and a full morning session of the UTECH Europe 2006 conference will provide delegates with a vital update to the latest requirements and, more importantly, the possible development of these issues in the immediate future.UTECH Europe 2006, running 28-30 March in the Maastricht Exhibition and Conference Centre, in the Netherlands, is the key event for the polyurethanes industry in 2006. It includes a 100-strong exhibition of suppliers of materials and processing technologies to this innovative sector, and a major international conference, and is expected to attract more than 3000 people to the south eastern corner of the Netherlands.The environmental, health and safety session, created by Mike Jeffs and Karl-Wilhelm Kroesen of ISOPA (the European Isocyanate and Polyol Producers Association), will open the second day of the UTECH Europe 2006 conference on 29 March in Maastricht.The session will feature presentations from specialists in all main polyurethane application sectors, with details of the current state of play in the key areas including REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals) and ISOPA's product stewardship programme, as well as vital issues such as flame retardants, blowing agents, recycling and sustainability. The international nature of these issues will be highlighted in a presentation from the US Alliance for the Polyurethanes Industry.The remainder of the conference, following a major, market-oriented session on the first morning, will comprise more than 50 technical presentations from internationally recognised experts, providing a key opportunity for all polyurethane processors to hear of the latest developments.These technical presentations at the UTECH Europe 2006 conference are grouped in eight sessions detailing the advances in all key applications sectors including automotive, rigid and flexible foams, footwear and CASE (coatings, adhesives, sealants and elastomers), as well as a separate section on innovation.Make your date to find out what's happening in the fastest-growing segment of the polymer industry now; And note that conference reservation before 17 Feb. saves £95 over the on-site price.For further details, including on-line registration, please visit www.utech-2006.com, or Email: [email protected]ENVIRONMENT, SAFETY AND HEALTH SESSION, 29 March 10:00-13:00Introduction to ISOPA Product Stewardship, Mike Jeffs, ISOPAISOPA Product Stewardship Programme, Rosella Bronzi, Dow Chemical Co.Why the ISOPA Product Stewardship Programme is needed, How it will be Delivered, and an Example of Content, Denis Hicks, Huntsman Polyurethanes GroupPolyurethane Recovery and Recycling: Position of the Flexible Foam Industry, Hubert Creyf, Recticel NV-SAFlame Retardants Used in Polyurethane Foam: An Update on Regulatory and Fire Safety Issues - Directions in the 21st Century, Eric-Jack Gerard, Albemarle SABlowing Agents - Do We Still Need Fluorinated Gases? Christoph Meurer, Solvay SAREACH - Three Years after UTECH Europe 2003, Christina Arregui, CEFICN American EHS Issues: Will They Migrate to Europe? Stephanie Bernard, Alliance for the Polyurethanes Industry Inc.Polyurethane versus Competitive Materials: Sustainability Considerations, John Garbutt, Kingspan Insulation Ltd"