California Proposition 65

California Proposition 65

In 1986 California voters approved the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act known as Proposition 65. The purpose of Proposition 65 is to ensure that businesses provide consumers with a “clear and reasonable” warning before they are exposed to significant amounts of chemicals that are known to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects, or other reproductive harm.

A business is not required to provide a warning if it can prove that the exposure to any listed chemical that is present in the product does not pose a “significant risk” to the average user resulting from the product’s normal, intended use.

Although the State of California has identified “safe harbor” levels for some of the over 800 chemicals listed, there are many chemicals for which “safe harbor” levels have yet to be determined. Further, there is little regulatory guidance in place in order to determine whether or when the use of a product results in exposure below those levels and therefore poses no significant risk.

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