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California Regulators Want Safer Chemical Alternatives

California flagThe California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) wants manufacturers to find alternatives to three chemicals contained in consumer product. The regulatory follows DTSC’s Safer Consumer Products regulations, which took effect Oct.1, 2013.

DTSC selected these priority products because they contain at least one of more than 1,100 toxic chemicals that the department identified as having the potential to cause significant harm to people or the environment.

The three products are:

  • Children’s foam padded sleeping products containing TDCPP (chlorinated TRIS), a flame retardant and probable carcinogen that can also cause chronic health effects.
  • Spray Polyurethane foam systems containing unreacted di-isocyanates (dg). SPF systems are used for home and building insulation, weatherization, sealing and roofing. Di-isocyanates can irritate the respiratory tract, cause asthma and cancer and are known skin irritants.
  • Paint stripper containing methylene chloride, a known carcinogen and neurotoxin.

DTSC is not banning these products. It is starting a process, requiring manufacturers who want to sell them in California to conduct an “Alternatives Analysis” to determine if feasible safer ingredients are available. The final list of Priority Products won’t be official until a rule-making process is complete, which could take up to a year.

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