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JUNE 2021 - SOFTLINES
The California Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) finalized amendments1 to Safer Consumer Products Regulation. Carpets and rugs2 containing perfluoroalkyl or polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are adopted as a priority product effective 1 July 2021.
Once the priority product is adopted in regulations, the responsible entities, including manufacturers, importers, assemblers or retailers, are required to submit priority product notification in 60 days (i.e. 30 August 2021). They need to perform a preliminary alternatives analysis (PAA) that reduces adverse impacts of the product with the chemical of concern. The PAA report is submitted to DTSC within 180 days (i.e. 28 December 2021).
The carpets and rugs refer to any consumer product made from natural or synthetic fabric intended to be used as a floor covering inside commercial or residential buildings, including carpeted doormats. However, they do not include carpets and rugs solely for outdoor use, used in various means of transportation e.g. vehicles and aeroplanes, resilient floor coverings, artificial turf, wall hangings and coverings, table mats and camping sleeping mats. Moreover, PFAS is a class of fluorinated organic chemicals containing at least one fully fluorinated carbon atom.
DTSC identified that carpets and rugs are major sources of human and ecological PFAS exposures. PFAS are added to these products for water, oil or stain repellent finishing3. Health effects associated with PFAS include cancer, hormone disruption, liver and kidney damage, developmental and reproductive harm. They are extremely persistent and do not break down easily. These substances can accumulate in humans and the environment.
The upcoming priority products are under evaluation by DTSC. Food packaging containing PFAS is one of them. Moreover, DTSC already published 2021-2023 workplan4 to identify priority products. It defines the product categories to be evaluated during those three-year period. The newly added categories will be children’s products and motor vehicle tires.
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