Food Packaging Alert: Increasing State Scrutiny of PFAs, BPA and BPS

Written by and
Washington recently passed legislation that will examine and possibly lead to a ban on perfluorinated chemicals (PFAs) in food packaging.  Under Washington’s Healthy Food Packaging Act (H.B. 2658/S.B. 6396), which takes effect June 7, the Department of Ecology is required to identify safer alternatives to PFAs by January 1, 2020.  If Ecology succeeds in doing so, the law will ban PFAs in paper food packaging two years later, on January 1, 2022.  If Ecology does not find safer alternatives, Ecology will be required to review safer alternatives every year.  When Ecology finds an acceptable [...]Read more

Manufacturer’s Alert: Focus of California Regulations for Next Three Years

Written by
Product manufacturers of the following product categories will be the focus of DTSC’s safer consumer product regulations for the next three years: Beauty, Personal Care, and Hygiene Products Cleaning Products Household, School, and Workplace Furnishings and Décor Building Products and Materials Used in Construction and Renovation Consumable Office, School, and Business Supplies Food Packaging Lead-Acid Batteries This is the second Three Year Work Plan released by DTSC.   The State of California will now gather information about products in these categories in workshops [...]Read more

Consumer Product and Packaging Alert: Enforcement Activities are Increasing for “Biodegradable” Claims and Toxics in Packaging

Written by
California’s district attorneys and regulatory enforcement attorneys are increasing their policing efforts on consumer product label claims and packaging content. Consumer product manufacturers and their packaging suppliers should make renewed efforts to ensure compliance with the California Toxics in Packaging Prevention Act (TIPPA) (see Cal. Health and Safety Code Section 25214.11) which limits the content of toxic metals (i.e., lead, cadmium, mercury or hexavalent chromium) to 100 ppm. Sale of any product with packaging exceeding this content limit is prohibited in the State of California. [...]Read more

Paint Strippers Containing Methylene Chloride – State of California’s 3rd Priority Product Proposed

Written by
On November 16, 2017, the State of California’s DTSC proposed to add its third product-chemical combination to its priority products list for regulation under its green chemistry/safer consumer products rules.   We are all still waiting to see the first, or any product, undergo the voluminous data, reporting and analytical requirements of the regulations and it remains to be seen if any ever will.   The third product to be proposed is “paint or varnish strippers containing methylene chloride” defined as “any product designed to break down paint, varnish, or any other surface coating [...]Read more

New California Product Label and Internet Disclosure Requirements (and New Crime for Employers who Fail to Disclose) for Cleaning Products

Written by
On October 15, 2017, California enacted SB 258 – the Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017 (Cal. Health and Safety Code Sections 108950 et seq.) – that requires product label and on-line disclosure requirements or bans sale of cleaning products and creates a new crime for  employers who fail to make such disclosures to their employees. The new labeling and disclosure requirements apply to air care, automotive, polish or floor maintenance and other general cleaning products (e.g., soaps, detergents, fabric care).  It does not include certain cleaning products used in industrial [...]Read more

New Regulatory Hurdles Proposed for Hazardous Waste Facilities in California

Written by
On September 22, 2017, DTSC commenced the public comment period for its proposed regulations to update the criteria for the issuance of hazardous waste facility permits and permit modifications pursuant to SB 673. The 70 pages of the proposed regulations are a radical departure from the permitting process of the past 25 years in California. In some respects, the burdens proposed are so high that one wonders if this portends the end of hazardous waste facilities in the state. On the positive side, this will have local EJ (environmental justice) communities cheering and it does present an enormous [...]Read more

Is That Regulation Affordable? If It’s Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, It Better Be

Written by
You open your mailbox. There’s your monthly water bill. Inside, you notice it’s gone up nearly $500—but your use hasn’t changed. How could this be? And maybe more important, can you afford it? This is an essential question, concludes the Sacramento Superior Court. So essential that it must be considered when enacting standards under California’s Safe Drinking Water Act. The regulation in question, a primary drinking water standard for hexavalent chromium, was enacted in 2014 and set the maximum contaminant level—or MCL—at 10 parts per billion. The rulemaking was controversial, [...]Read more

Cannabis Industry Jammed With Extensive Environmental Regulations

Written by
The surge of new cannabis-related regulations continues in California this month, this time courtesy of the State Water Resources Control Board.  In response to Senate Bill 837, the agency recently released a draft Cannabis Policy and General Order aimed at regulating the water-quality impacts of cannabis cultivation. The proposed Order lists well over 100 requirements and prohibitions, which range from the expected, such as riparian setbacks, in-stream flow limits, and water-use recording mandates, to the burdensome:  under the Order, legacy impacts from poorly-designed logging road would [...]Read more

California Air Resources Board New Draft Enforcement Penalty Policy

Written by
Today, CARB held another workshop to explain its new draft enforcement penalty policy and the factors it will use in assessing penalties in future enforcement cases. The factors are qualitative and narrative and subjective, which is bad for business that craves certainty and predictability but fun for the art of lawyering (our quills are aquiver). An increasing problem for industry is that the reporting requirements under the climate change rules, such as diesel fleet, low carbon fuel and cap and trade, are becoming so voluminous and complex that it is easy to make honest errors in these reports. [...]Read more

EPA Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule Delayed Until Feb. 2019

Written by and
The effective date of EPA’s Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule has been delayed from June 19, 2017 to February 19, 2019.  EPA issued a Final Rule on June 9 explaining that the 20-month delay will “allow EPA to conduct a reconsideration proceeding and to consider other issues that may benefit from additional comment.” [1] This delay—and the signal that EPA may be reviewing “other issues” with the original RMP Rule that may not have been affected by the now-delayed amendment—show that Pruitt’s EPA intends to act on its goal of minimizing regulatory burden on industry. Environmentalists, [...]Read more