SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Household and industrial cleaning products sold in California may soon be free of the toxic “forever chemicals” known as PFAS. Today the California Assembly voted 60-0 in favor of a first-in-the-nation bill to ban PFAS from those products.
Assembly Bill 727, authored by Assemblymember Dr. Akilah Weber (D-La Mesa), would make California the first state to ban PFAS chemicals in household, industrial and institutional cleaners.
The bill now heads to the state Senate, where cleaning product manufacturers will keep trying to defeat it. If enacted, it would take effect on January 1, 2025.
The Environmental Working Group and the California Association of Sanitation Agencies are sponsoring the legislation.
“Californians are demanding manufacturers prevent unnecessary exposure to health-harming PFAS, and lawmakers are listening,” said Weber. “These dangerous chemicals cause serious and long-term damage to the human body.”
PFAS are known as forever chemicals because they do not break down in our environment and they build up in our blood and organs. They are linked to a range of serious health harms.
“It’s not fair that the people keeping our homes, schools, hospitals and airports clean are unknowingly risking their health and the health of everyone around them,” said Weber. “We trust that our colleagues in the Senate will support this commonsense policy to protect community and environmental health as the state continues to lead on a PFAS-free future.”
“California is blazing a path toward health-protective policy that limits PFAS exposure in our everyday lives – from personal care products to household cleaners," said Susan Little, EWG’s senior advocate for California government affairs.
“As lawmakers in the state Senate prepare to host hearings about A.B. 727, we want to remind them that their support for this bill will push PFAS out of cleaning products sold not only in California but throughout the nation,” said Little.
Very low doses of PFAS in drinking water have been linked to the suppression of the immune system and are associated with an elevated risk of cancer, increased cholesterol, and reproductive and developmental harms, among other serious health concerns.
These chemicals are used in a wide range of consumer products, including cleaners, as well as personal care products, food packaging, textiles like waterproof clothing, and many others.
“The presence of PFAS in cleaning products unnecessarily exposes Californians to toxic chemicals that present a risk to public health and the environment,” said Adam Link, executive director of the California Association of Sanitation Agencies. “These chemicals can seep into our watersheds, pollute our waterways and should be removed from the stream of commerce at their source.”
“Wastewater agencies urge state lawmakers to consider the lasting impacts of ‘forever chemicals' on California’s precious waters and support A.B. 727,” he added.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) 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
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.or