TSG News Banner World Map

DTSC Publishes Draft Three-Year Priority Product Workplan (September 2014)

On September 12, 2014, California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) published its draft Priority Product Workplan, which outlines DTSC’s direction for the Safer Consumer Products program over the next three years. While the Workplan does not specifically identify Priority Products or Chemicals of Concern, DTSC has selected the product categories that will be evaluated against the Candidate Chemicals list as potential product-chemical combinations for Priority Product listing over the next three years. DTSC anticipates that it will choose between 5 and 10 Priority Products per year from the product categories identified in the Workplan.

Product Categories and Subcategories
Beauty/Personal Care/Hygiene Cleaning Products
Skin Products Fresheners/Deodorizers
Personal Hygiene Products Cleaners
Hair Products Laundry
Cosmetics/Fragrances Surface Care
Building Products Household/Office Furniture/Furnishings
Flooring Bedding
Painting Fabric/Textile Furnishings
Sealants/Fillers/Adhesives Household/Office Seating
Office Machinery Consumable Products Clothing
Inks/Toners Full Body Wear
Specialty Paper Lower Body Wear/Bottoms
Fishing and Angling Equipment Sleepwear
  Upper Body Wear/Tops
DTSC’s Workplan addresses potential human exposures and environmental effects associated with chemicals in consumer products.


Beauty, Personal Care and Hygiene Products
These products include body washes and soaps, deodorants, lip balms and gloss, lotions, ointments, pomades, hair care products, cosmetics and nail care products.

DTSC relied on a number of factors when choosing to add beauty, personal care and hygiene products, including:

The products are designed to be applied to the body, directly exposing users to whatever chemicals they contain.

Chemical ingredients are sometimes not disclosed on product labels. This impedes consumers’ ability to make informed decisions to avoid certain
chemicals and makes it difficult for workers to know what practices to follow to protect themselves from chemical exposure.

    ▲ Some of the chemical ingredients are known to be hazardous to people and wildlife.

    ▲ Some chemicals used in these products have been detected in humans in Biomonitoring studies.

These chemicals may pass through wastewater treatment plants and can expose wildlife.

This Workplan category will enable DTSC to use information that others have compiled to challenge manufacturers to find safer alternatives.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: aldehydes and formaldehyde; alkyl phenols and ethoxylates; azo dyes; coal tars; lead and lead acetate; phthalates; triclosan; toluene.

Building Products and Household, Office Furniture and Furnishings
Building products are paints, adhesives, sealants and flooring. Home and office furniture and furnishing products treated with flame retardants or stain resistant chemicals (or both) are also under consideration.

DTSC chose these categories due to a combination of factors that creates a high likelihood of exposure to hazardous chemicals, including:

Products in these categories are used by virtually all members of society.

    ▲ These products contain a wide range of chemical ingredients, including Candidate Chemicals with known hazard traits.

    ▲ Use of the products indoors, where air exchange is slow, causes longer exposures to higher levels of certain Candidate Chemicals, especially
since people spend 90% of their time indoors.

    ▲ People who work regularly with building products face even higher risk of exposure.

    ▲ Toddlers have been shown to have direct exposure to chemicals from these product categories due to the fact that they crawl on the floor and put
their hands in their mouths, thereby ingesting house dust.

Flame-retardant and stain-resistant Candidate Chemicals used in home furnishings have been detected in household dust and in human
Biomonitoring studies.

The incidence of childhood asthma has increased significantly in recent decades, and Candidate Chemicals that cause or worsen asthma are
found in building products.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: chlorinated or brominated organic compounds and organophosphates; isocyanates; metals (e.g., chromium VI); perfluorinated compounds; phthalates; volatile organic compounds (e.g., formaldehyde, n-hexane, n-methyl-pyrrolidone, toluene).

Cleaning Products
These products include general cleaners, air fresheners and deodorizers, laundry detergents and various surface cleaners that are used in homes, schools, hospitals, restaurants, hotels, offices and other indoor/outdoor environments.

DTSC added cleaning products due to a variety of factors related to exposure and use, including:

    ▲ Products in this category are ubiquitous and widely used.

These products contain a wide variety of chemical ingredients, including Candidate Chemicals that expose people during and after use.

    ▲ People are easily exposed to chemicals in cleaning products through routes such as dermal contact and inhalation.

    ▲ Chemicals in cleaning products may affect indoor air quality after use and contaminate water when washed down the drain.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: alkyl phenol and ethoxylates; hydrogen fluoride; phthalates; triclosan; volatile organic compounds (e.g., n-hexane, methyl ethyl ketone, n-mthyl-pyrrolidone, toluene, xylene).

These products include full body wear, sleepwear, sportswear, underwear and upper/lower body wear.

DTSC’s identification of this product category builds off of efforts already undertaken by the clothing and textile industry to reduce their use of toxic chemicals. Reasoning includes:

    ▲ The sheer quantity and types of clothing in the market is enormous, and virtually used by all members of society.

Many modern clothing properties desired by consumers, including color fastness, wrinkle resistance, stain resistance and water repellency, are achieved
using a variety of chemicals (some of which are toxic, bioaccumulative or environmentally persistent).

    ▲ Clothing and textile manufacturing use large quantities of water, most of which is discharged as wastewater and can harm aquatic organisms.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: alkyl phenol and ethoxylates; aromatic amines and azo dyes; chlorinated paraffins; halogenated compounds and organophosphates; perfluorinated compounds and formaldehyde; phthalates; triclosan.

Office Machinery (Consumable Products)
This product category includes consumable and refillable components of office machinery , such as cash registers, credit card terminals, printers and photocopiers, that must periodically be refilled or replaced because they have been depleted. Examples include printer inks, specialty paper and toner cartridges.

DTSC chose this product category for various reasons, including:

    ▲ Products are widely used in offices, retail stores and homes.

The products contain a range of hazardous chemicals, which have high transfer and exposure rates through routine use.

    ▲ Workers who use office machinery daily often have significant exposure to these chemicals.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: azo dyes; bisphenols; phthalates; volatile organic compounds (e.g., benzaldehyde, hexanol, toluene and xylene).

Fishing and Angling Equipment
This category includes all fishing weights and gear. This category was chosen by DTSC as over two million Californians fish and lose hundreds of tons of equipment in the environment. This equipment can harm wildlife through exposure to metals, such as lead, zinc and copper.

Potential Candidate Chemicals: metals.

More Information
DTSC Schedules Priority Product Workplan Workshops
Safer Consumer Products Program FAQ
Contact TSG

Follow Us on LinkedIn
 TSG Logo
 Homepage Link      Email This Page Print this Page

Subscribe to email advisories View all TSG advisories