New Proposition 65 Warning Regulations Released Today!

Environmental Law  

January 12, 2015


Today the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) released two separate but related new Proposition 65 warning regulations  that establish a Lead Agency Website, and seek to improve the content and methods of warnings for chemicals identified by the State of California that are known to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity (“Draft Regulations”). However, without further substantive changes, the Draft Regulations fall short of the reforms needed to materially reduce the expanding docket of Proposition 65 litigation claims and cases. 
 
The Draft Regulations seek to create a “Lead Agency Website” operated by OEHHA that would provide supplemental information to the public about potential exposures to Proposition 65 listed chemicals, including how they might be exposed, and how they might reduce or avoid such exposures.  
 
The Draft Regulations also focus on two issues: (1) Making more information available to the public in the warnings that are provided; and (2) giving businesses greater flexibility and certainty in terms of the warnings it provides. The Draft Regulations revise the portion of the Proposition 65 regulations related to what qualifies as a “clear and reasonable warning,” but do not address more foundational issues related to when a product causes an exposure to a Prop 65-listed chemical that requires a warning.  
 
OEHHA has stated that the Draft Regulations are not intended as a final product, and are interested in hearing from stakeholders regarding potential revisions.  The comment period on the Draft Regulations will begin on January 16, 2015 and close on April 8, 2015.  OEHHA is also holding a public hearing on March 25, 2015. 
 
Related documents can be accessed here: Draft Regulations and Clear and Reasonable Warnings
 
We will provide a more detailed review of the Draft Regulations in a further update to our clients, colleagues and friends shortly.