Key representatives of the nation's home insulation industry met with Department of Energy officials this week to review the problems surrounding the home insulation room. Their discussion centered on reported shortages of certain insulation material like mineral wool and cellulose.

Earlier in the week, at the Consumer Product Safety Commission, staffers informed the commissioners that they were leading toward a mid-January target date for the proposal of mandatory standards for the home insulation industry.

The CPSC staffers also reported that discussions with industry representatives over proposed labeling to appear on insulation "went well," according to CPSC sources.

Staff members hope to convince the industry to come up with voluntary labeling proposals that will inform consumers about where and how to install insulation with the least danger and how to be aware of specific dangers. Labels could warn the consumers to wear goggles and certain respiratory devices aimed at preventing the installer from inhaling dangerous fumes.

According to Bert Simpson, director of the CPSC office of program management.

"We are evaluating viable voluntary standards to be presented to the commssion that we hope can reduce the risk of injury or death from fire in cellulose insulation."

Simpson called insulation "a complex issue." He said the original petition calling for standards was very broad, dealing with many materials and hazards.

He said the standard to be eventually proposed will deal exclusively with the fire aspects in the cellulose-type insulation. "If the cellulose insulation is made properly, there is little danger of fire," Simpson said. "It's actually fairly safe."