SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The California legislature today advanced Assembly Bill 2247, a measure to collect and report on the products and substances sold in the state or brought into California that contain the toxic “forever chemicals” known as PFAS. The law now goes to Gov. Gavin Newsom.
“A.B. 2247 will help us accurately identify how many PFAS are coming into California,” said Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica). “Giving the state the authority to collect this data will enable us to explore how best to mitigate its harmful impacts. Without this information, we cannot take meaningful steps toward protecting the health of Californians and our environment in the long-term.”
Bloom authored A.B. 2247, with state Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) and Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) as coauthors.
The state needs to know how many PFAS are entering and sold in California and in what form to regulate these toxic compounds and prevent further human or environmental exposure. Local governments, water treatment services and businesses must know the sources of PFAS to better manage contamination and ensure the public isn’t unnecessarily exposed.
A broad coalition supports the bill, including all of the state’s sanitation and water agencies, cities, counties and special districts, and dozens of clean water and public health advocates, including the Environmental Working Group.
Before the Senate vote, Silicon Valley launched a last-ditch effort to torpedo this PFAS reporting bill. Some of California’s most powerful corporations actively opposed the bill before the Senate vote, which passed the bill 23-12.
The Silicon Valley Leadership Group Tech and Innovation Committee opposed A.B. 2247 and urged state legislators to block the legislation. Among the members of the SVLG board are executives from Zoom, IBM, Hewett Packard and the San Francisco 49ers. The SVLG’s membership includes some of the most state’s most powerful companies and institutions, including Apple, Google, Microsoft, Zillow, Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley, among many others.
Honeywell also lobbied against the PFAS reporting bill. The company has proposed cosmetics manufacturers use new PFAS compounds in spray- and foam-based personal care products, such has hair spray, body lotion, makeup, antiperspirant, sunscreen and even baby ointment.
Despite far-reaching support for this measure, many other industries came out in opposition. Manufacturers and lobbying groups that represent makers of consumer and household products, animal and human pharmaceuticals, automobiles, motorcycles, computers and semiconductors opposed revealing more information about the PFAS they bring into the state.
The bill would set reporting requirements for companies in the state that manufacture or import products containing the chemicals.
“These toxic chemicals live forever in our water, our food and our bodies,” said Allen, who chairs the Senate Environmental Quality Committee. “We must understand where PFAS are coming from if we can hope to reduce their harmful effects.”
PFAS are among the most persistent toxic compounds in existence, contaminating everything from drinking water to food. Because of their grease-, stain- and water-resistant qualities, they are used widely in consumer products, such as food packaging, personal care products and textiles, as well as microchips and other components produced and used by Silicon Valley.
“PFAS are harmful to the health and well-being of all Californians,” said Bloom. “It’s unconscionable that PFAS are polluting our drinking water systems and impacting some of our most vulnerable communities.”
PFAS are found in the blood of virtually everyone, including newborn babies. Very low doses of PFAS have been linked to suppression of the immune system, including reduced vaccine efficacy. These chemicals harm development and the reproductive system, such as reduced birth weight and impacts on fertility; increased risk of certain cancers; and effects on metabolism, such as changes in cholesterol and weight gain.
“California needs a clear understanding of where toxic PFAS are coming from,” said Susan Little, EWG’s senior advocate for government affairs. “It is long past time we turned off the tap on PFAS pollution. We must learn where the contamination is coming from to prevent more of these ‘forever chemicals’ from getting into our water, food and air.”
“CASA applauds the legislature for passing A.B. 2247,” said Adam Link, executive director of the California Association of Sanitation Agencies. “Water and wastewater agencies are proactively looking for solutions to limit the amount of PFAS entering our watersheds. We need data about the sources of PFAS entering our waterways in order to make informed management decisions. A.B. 2247 is an important first step toward developing a comprehensive PFAS pollution prevention approach.”
“We’d like to thank Assemblymember Bloom and our partners at Clean Water Action and Environmental Working Group for helping to make this possible,” Link said.
PFAS are used in a staggering array of consumer products and commercial applications. Decades of heavy use have resulted in contamination of water, soil and animals in the farthest corners of the world.
“When virtually every Californian has toxic PFAS in their body, babies are born with them, and the chemicals are detected in our water systems serving 16 million people, we cannot continue to be in the dark about where these chemicals are coming from and how they enter the environment,” said Andria Ventura, legislative and policy director at Clean Water Action. “We urge Gov. Newsom to sign this absolutely necessary legislation into law.”
“Regulators, water agencies, elected officials, consumers and businesses need this crucial PFAS data to best manage these forever chemicals,” she added.
A.B. 2247 would require manufacturers to disclose, in a publicly accessible database, PFAS substances, or PFAS intentionally added to products, sold in or imported into California, and information on the type and quantity of PFAS compound they contain.
The California Department of Toxic Substances Control will work with the Interstate Chemicals Clearinghouse to create and maintain the new PFAS database, which will be available by July 1, 2026, and help reduce and clean up PFAS contamination. The clearinghouse is an association of state, local, and tribal governments that promotes the use of safer chemicals and products.
It is vital that all unnecessary, or non-essential, uses of PFAS immediately be phased out to stop any further releases into the environment and protect public health.
A.B. 2247 is sponsored by the Environmental Working Group, the California Association of Sanitation Agencies and Clean Water Action.
The Environmental Working Group is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization that empowers people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. Through research, advocacy and unique education tools, EWG drives consumer choice and civic action. https://www.ewg.org/
The California Association of Sanitation Agencies represents more than 125 local public agencies engaged in the collection, treatment and recycling of wastewater and biosolids to protect public health and the environment. CASA provides trusted information and advocacy on behalf of California clean water agencies, and to be a leader in sustainability and utilization of renewable resources. https://casaweb.org/
Clean Water Action is a nonprofit organization that works to protect our environment, health, economic well-being and community quality of life. Clean Water Action organizes strong grassroots groups and coalitions, and campaigns to elect environmental candidates and to solve environmental and community problems. https://www.cleanwater.org/