What California Product Rules Mean Moving Forward
The Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) recently issued its final Priority Product Three-Year Work Plan under the State's Safer Consumer Products regulations — better known as California's Green Chemistry Initiative — in an effort to regulate chemicals in a variety of products sold within California. This is part three of a three-part article on the topic.
Once "priority product" listing regulations are finalized, companies and industries that manufacture, sell or use the listed products will be required to conduct a multi-stage "alternatives analysis" and submit the results to DTSC. After evaluating these analyses, DTSC can undertake one of seven possible actions, including:
• Issuing no regulatory response;
• Requesting additional information;
• Requiring product information for consumers;
• Imposing use restrictions or sales prohibitions on certain products;
• Requiring safety measures or administrative controls;
• Imposing end-of-life management requirements; or
• Encouraging the advancement of "green chemistry" through engineering.
The current Work Plan will remain effective through the end of 2017, at which time DTSC will prepare a new or revised work plan covering the subsequent three-year period. During the second half of 2015, DTSC intends to conduct workshops and involve the public in discussion of potential "priority products" that may become subject to regulation.
Thus, while the current Work Plan and initial list of "priority products" appear to provide some measure of predictability about which products and chemicals are on DTSC's regulatory radar for the next three years, companies that manufacture, sell or use cleaning products should keep themselves informed and participate in the public process, while continuing to monitor DTSC's actions that may signal where the agency is likely to focus its future regulatory efforts.
This article was researched and written by Joshua A. Bloom, a partner, and Samir J. Abdelnour, an attorney, at Barg, Coffin, Lewis & Trapp, LLP, a San Francisco-based environmental law firm. They can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com, respectively, or via the firm's website, http://www.bcltlaw.com.