California

Lynn L. Bergeson, "EPA Targets Formaldehyde Vapors," Chemical Processing, January 2, 2017.

On December 12, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a long-awaited final rule to reduce exposure to formaldehyde vapors from certain wood products produced domestically or imported into the United States. Formaldehyde is found in the adhesives used in a range of composite wood products. This column summarizes the new rule.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Evolving Global Chemical Management Programs and Why They Matter," Trends, the ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Newsletter, November 2014.

Chemicals play a central role in our personal and professional lives. As consumers, we focus keenly on the chemicals in the products we use and with which we come into contact. Globalization and the emergence worldwide of sophisticated chemical management programs invite complex legal, commercial, and scientific challenges. These challenges extend far beyond compliance questions that, by comparison, seem now nostalgically straightforward. Understanding these programs and their evolution can only help inform our judgment as lawyers, consultants, and educated consumers.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Chemical Compliance: California Calls for Changes to Prop 65," Chemical Processing, April 10, 2014.

On March 7, 2014, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) released a proposal for a draft regulation amending Proposition 65 regulations. The proposal seeks changes to the warning requirements to include more detailed information, including the names of the chemicals covered by individual warnings, the ways that individuals are exposed to these chemicals, and how individuals can avoid or reduce their exposure to these chemicals. This column explains this proposal and its significance.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Brave New World: California Finalizes Safer Consumer Products Regulations," Environmental Quality Management, Spring 2014.

It is official. California’s Office of Administrative Law (OAL) approved the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) Safer Consumer Products regulations, and the program went into effect on October 1, 2013. The regulations mark the much-anticipated regulatory implementation of California’s Green Chemistry Initiative. The regulations and final statement of reasons are available at http://www.dtsc.ca.gov/SCPRegulations.cfm. This new program is a true game-changer, and it will have profound national and international business, regulatory, and commercial implications for consumer product manufacturers and others for the reasons noted in this Washington Watch article. 

Lisa R. Burchi, "DTSC Releases Final Safer Consumer Products Regulations," ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Chemicals, Chemicals Regulation, and Right-to-Know Committee Newsletter, November, 2013.

On August 28, 2013, California’s Office of Administrative Law (OAL) approved the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC or department) Safer Consumer Products Regulations (regulations). The regulations took effect on October 1, 2013. The regulations are the much-anticipated regulatory implementation of California’s Green Chemistry Initiative. The regulations and final statement of reasons are available at http://www.dtsc.ca.gov/SCPRegulations.cfm.

The scope of the regulations, including the four core elements of the regulations—candidate chemicals, priority products (PP), alternatives analysis (AA), and regulatory responses—is discussed.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Toxic Chemicals: Prepare for Product Regulations," Chemical Processing, .

The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) Safer Consumer Products Regulations are now in effect (See "California Cracks Down on Chemicals"). While the most onerous requirements for "responsible entities" (manufacturers, importers, assemblers and retailers) will not hit for a while, companies should consider taking some initial steps now to understand how these regulations may affect operations in the future.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "California Cracks Down On Chemicals," Chemical Processing, September 16, 2013.

On August 23, 2013, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) released changes to the near final Safer Consumer Products Regulations (SCPR). These game-changing regulations took effect October 1, 2013. This column broadly outlines the rule and summarizes the changes.

Lynn L. Bergeson, co-author, "A Multi-Stakeholder Perspective on the Use of Alternative Test Strategies for Nanomaterial Safety Assessment," ACS Nano, August 7, 2013.

This article presents the results of a January 2013 workshop convened at the California NanoSystems Institute of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and hosted by the University of California Center for the Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology, as well as the UCLA Center for Nanobiology and Predictive Toxicology. Using carbon nanotubes as a case study, national and international leaders from government, industry, and academia discussed the utility of alternative test strategies (ATS) for decision-making analyses of engineered nanomaterials (ENM). After discussions, participants generated a short list of generally shared viewpoints, including a general view that ATS approaches for ENMs can significantly benefit chemical safety analysis. The article is available for purchase online.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Obama’s Second Term: What Does It Mean for US EPA and the Regulated Community?," Environmental Quality Management, Spring 2013.

President Obama won a decisive victory on November 6, 2012, and the forecast for the next four years is clearer now than it was pre-election. This Washington Watch column offers some preliminary observations on what lies ahead for domestic environmental management issues at the legislative and regulatory levels.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "One Step Closer:  California Proposes Safer Consumer Products Regulations," Environmental Quality Management, Winter 2012.

The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (CDTSC) is one step closer to implementing the state’s Green Chemistry Initiative (GCI), which directs regulators to evaluate safer alternatives to chemicals that are believed to be toxic. These are not “garden variety” chemical regulations that impose a restriction here or there to prevent a perceived risk. Far from it. These regulations are game-changers. They ultimately will transform the way manufacturers select raw materials and make consumer products. As a result, these regulations are likely to influence significantly — and permanently — the way consumer products are conceived, formulated, and distributed. This “Washington Watch” column summarizes the core elements of the proposed Safer Consumer Products Regulations, highlighting significant changes from prior proposals.

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