Skip to main content

What is California Up To? – The Initial List of Candidate Chemicals is Published

The California Safer Consumer Products Regulations (SCPR) took effect on October 1, 2013.   The CA Dept of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) released a list of 150 informational "initial" candidate chemicals.  Based on that list, DTSC will choose three to five consumer "priority" products containing one or more of these chemicals for the first round of priority products/ chemicals of concern combinations that will be subject to the requirements.   Although the list has a number of chemicals that are not likely to be contained in consumer products sold in California, i.e., dioxins, PCBs, PAHs, nitrosamines, and various chlorinated solvents, the list has a number of interesting entries, notably:

  • Parabens:  Butylparaben [includes n‐butylparaben and isobutylparaben], Ethylparaben,  Methylparaben; Propylparaben, potentially used as preservatives in cosmetics and other consumer products;
  • Fuel oils, high‐sulfur; Heavy Fuel oil; (and other residual oils); 4 Fuel oil, No 6; Heavy Fuel oil; Gasoline (automotive, refined, processed, recovered, and other unspecified fractions); Gasoline, natural; Low boiling point naphtha; Jet Fuels, JP‐4, JP‐5, JP‐7 and JP‐8; Petroleum; Crude oil; Used Mineral‐based Crankcase Oil;
  • Brominated flame retardants, including HBCD;
  • Phthalates of various types;
  • Isocyanates potentially used in polyurethane-based adhesives, including MDI and TDI;
  • MDA potentially used in epoxy resins;
  • Glycol ethers and glycol ether acetates potentially used in lubricants and friction oils;
  • Tetrahydrofuran potentially used in varnish and adhesives;
  • Beryllium and Beryllium compounds potentially used in certain electronic goods;
  • Cadmium, Lead, Mercury, and compounds thereof;
  • Various aromatic azo dyes; and
  • Styrene

Although it is difficult to see where DTSC will go with this list, the Department will need to cull the list to come up with its initial list of up to 5 priority products/ chemical of concern combinations.  The DTSC plans to propose this initial list of up to 5 priority products/ chemical of concern combinations within the next 6 months and finalize the list after notice and comment rulemaking.

DTSC also published a longer "informational candidate chemicals list" of 1,200 chemicals that comprises the universe of chemicals on the DTSC’s list of list at section 69502.2(a) of the regulations.

Attention is most likely to focus on those substances that are perceived to generate high exposures to Californians and where being designated in the first priority group is likely to result in significant exposure reduction.