California Regulation – Comment Period Open

The bulk of the text for blog post is from Professional Beauty Association

On July 27, 2012 the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) issued newly revised proposed regulations under its legislative mandate to provide for Safer Consumer Products through the use of “Green Chemistry” to replace chemicals of concern.  The chemicals of concern (COC) will be based on and include lists prepared by numerous domestic and international bodies that identify both existing and possible chemicals of concern.

Bottom line from Anne-Marie: The financial ramifications of this law have not been determined (see official notice re: determination of financial impacts here). It is unknown what the impact to small business will be. We would urge caution adopting the legislation into law without a full financial overview so the true impact of the legislation is known. You can comment on this until Thursday, October 11  (address and email below). My official comment will be sweet and to the point:

Ms. Von Burg,

I am writing to express concern regarding the newly revised proposed Safer Consumer Product regulations. Specifically, I am concerned about the impact to small business. The fiscal considerations for the proposed changes have not yet been tabulated. For the sake of businesses of all size, but especially small business, please be cautious in adopting regulation where the financial ramification on business is unclear.


Anne-Marie Faiola

Questionable Fiscal Reprecussions

Text of Proposed Regulations

Summary of Proposed Regulations

Summary of Changes in July 2012 Proposed Regulations

Public Hearing (recording)

Responsible Parties Include:
Cosmetics and over the counter drug products will be covered by these regulations. The regulations will apply to responsible parties including manufacturers, marketers, importers, and retailers of products that contain chemicals of concern (COC).   These new regulations will require reformulation of products containing chemicals of concern (COC) with green chemical alternatives, or to otherwise justify continued marketing of the COC containing product in California by demonstrating through detailed analysis that human and environmental health and safety concerns can be addressed through limitations on use, concentrations of the COC’s, or other means.  If reformulation or demonstration of safety cannot be achieved the product would have to be removed from sale in California.

The principal duty to comply with the requirements of the regulations that apply to responsible entities lies with the manufacturer.  If the manufacturer does not comply, the importer, if any, then has the duty to comply.  A retailer is required to comply with the regulations only if the manufacturer and importers (if any) fail to comply, and only after this information is posted on the Failure to Comply List on DTSC’s website. 

A manufacturer or importer may opt out of complying with the above requirements by demonstrating to DTSC that the product is no longer being sold, offered for sale, distributed, supplied, or manufactured in California.

A retailer who becomes responsible for complying with the above requirements, due to non-compliance by the manufacturer/importer, may opt out by ceasing to order the product and providing a notification to DTSC. 

Chemicals of Concern (COC):
If finalized these proposed regulations will require the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to issue an immediate list of Chemicals of Concern (COC). It is estimated that the DTSC will initially identify at least 1,200 COCs.

Priority Products of Concern:
Responsible parties of priority products of concern are required to notify the DTSC when their products are listed and to perform extensive alternate analysis to determine how to prevent or limit the level of exposure to these COC’s. The DTSC can require consumer disclosures; establish requirements for the responsible party to maintain and fund end-of-life product programs; restrict the use of COCs in the product or use of the product itself; and / or prohibit sales of the product in California.

Send Comments To:
Please direct all written comments, procedural inquiries, and requests for documents by mail,
email or fax to:

Krysia Von Burg, Regulations Coordinator
Regulations Section
Department of Toxic Substances Control
P.O. Box 806
Sacramento, CA  95812-0806

E-mail Address:

Fax Number:  (916) 324-1808

Ms. Von Burg’s phone number is (916) 324-2810.  If Ms. Von Burg is unavailable, please call Mr. Cordova at (916) 324-7193.

Summary Report of Green Chemistry Regulations

California Department of Toxic Substances Control – Safer Consumer Products (SCP)


News Release: California’s Landmark Approach to Safer Consumer Products


Initial Statement of Reasons


Economic and Fiscal Impact Statement


Attachment to the Economic and Fiscal Impact Statement (Std. Form 399) Safer Consumer Products Regulations


Economic Analysis of California’s Green Chemistry Regulations for Safer Consumer Products


Estimated Costs for DTSC to Implement the Safer Consumer Products Regulations


Overview: The Safer Consumer Products Regulations


Chemicals of Concern: Hazard Traits & Exposure Indicators (~1,200)


Chemicals of Concern Lists Around the Globe


California Department of Toxic Substances Control – Green Chemistry Initiative

“Information from the Professional Beauty Association (PBA) website. For updates and further details on the California Green Chemistry Initiative, please visit”

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  1. Lona Bremer says

    Ya it would seem California would have bigger issues right now. I’m not bailing them out again when they can’t afford themselves. This just smacks of gov. wanting to pay themselves for small issues. Gotta go after the small business people, a sure bet for more tax money.

  2. says

    Thanks for letting us know about this!

    I’m curious who will compile the list. To take a recent example from another industry, it took forever for companies to remove BPA, even from baby bottles, though more and more evidence was piling up. What was the cost to change their plastics? As a mom, I don’t care. I would never want to use a bottle or sippy that had BPA in it.

    So while I understand that cost can be an issue for companies, safety and removal of toxic stuff should always come first. At the same time, I want the list of “concern” to be genuinely “concerning,” and not woo-woo.

    So who decides what’s on the list, and what science is required to show that something is a concern? From what I understand, the list hasn’t even been compiled yet.

    • Anne-Marie says

      Excellent question – and who decides the science?

      The COC’s (chemicals of concern) will be drawn from a variety of lists similar to this all across the world – so everything from the California Prop 65 list to the entire REACH legislation in the EU.

      I’m also extremely interested in who might actually determine the science for the studies. The way I read all the data for this is that California will determine the COC’s and then review existing studies/commission current studies to determine if they chemical can be used at all. They can also compel manufacturers to do their own studies to prove safety. I would hope that the scientists reviewing the data are top notch, impeccable, impeachable, impartial scientists that truly are the smartest people in the room.

      I agree with you re: safety and I think our industry would be the FIRST to cry out ‘foul!’ if there was an ingredient clearly proven to be unsafe and would not want to use it in their products. After all, many of us got into this industry to have an alternative to what’s easily and commonly available on the mass-market shelves right now.

  3. Sarah says


    I live in California and haven’t even heard of this till now. Thank you for all the hard work you do for all of us.


  4. says


    I can understand your concern and your probable frustration. We have the same theater, even worse in Europe. It seems to me that the authorities and the law makers are trying , hand in hand with lobbyists, to deliberately eliminate small business in favor of a couple of great names on the market.
    I wish you good luck and a high quantum of energy uniting your fellow suppliers and small manufacturers to react for their own survival.