Safer Products

We are working toward Safer California households, workplaces and products

Proposed Priority Product: Treatments Containing Perfluoroalkyl or Polyfluoroalkyl Substances for Use on Converted Textiles or Leathers

DTSC proposes to list treatments containing perfluoroalkyl or polyfluoroalkyl substances for use on converted textiles or leathers such as carpets, upholstery, clothing and shoes, as Priority Products under the Safer Consumer Products (SCP) regulations.
PFASs are a class of chemicals characterized by highly stable carbon-fluorine bonds and used in many applications. DTSC has identified treatments for converted textiles or leathers as significant sources of human and ecological PFAS exposures, especially via inhalation during product use. Treatments for converted textiles or leathers are frequently used in homes and in several occupations. They contribute to the ubiquitous environmental contamination and exposures, as do other consumer products such as food packaging, cosmetics, and waterproof clothing.

There is evidence that exposure to PFASs can lead to adverse health outcomes in humans. If humans are exposed to PFASs through diet, drinking water or inhalation, these chemicals remain in the body for a long time. As people continue to be exposed to PFASs the levels in their bodies may increase to the point where they suffer from adverse health effects. Studies indicate that some PFASs can cause reproductive and developmental, liver and kidney, and immunological effects, as well as tumors in laboratory animals. The most consistent findings from human epidemiology studies are a small increase in serum cholesterol levels among exposed populations, with more limited findings related to infant birth weights, effects on the immune system, cancer, and thyroid hormone disruption. Some PFASs have also been linked to phytotoxicity, aquatic toxicity, and terrestrial ecotoxicity.

Based on the criteria in the Safer Consumer Products regulations, DTSC has determined that the treatments containing PFASs for use on converted textiles or leathers have the potential to cause significant and widespread adverse impacts to sensitive subpopulations, including fetuses, infants, young children, pregnant women, carpet and upholstery cleaners, workers in upholstered furniture, furnishings, clothing, shoes, and carpet stores, as well as auto dealership workers and auto detailing technicians; to environmentally sensitive habitats; and to threatened and endangered species. Given the known hazard traits, replacing currently used PFASs in the treatments for converted textiles or leathers with other members of the PFAS class could constitute a regrettable substitution. Hence, this proposal covers treatments containing any member of the class of PFASs intended for use on converted textiles or leathers.

The SCP Program began researching this topic in 2016, when it sought public comment on a background document, and further explored the topic at a workshop on January 31, 2017. Materials from that workshop are available on our Workshops and Events Webpage

Public Comment Period

To submit comments and view related materials regarding this proposal, please visit the CalSAFER site. The comment period closes at 11:59 p.m. on December 31, 2019. Input from the workshop and public comment period will be taken into consideration as the Department finalizes the Product-Chemical Profile in preparation for rulemaking.

Public Workshop 

We will also host a public meeting to receive public input. The meeting will take place in the CalEPA Headquarters, Byron Sher Auditorium, 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA, on December 9, 2019, starting at 9:30 a.m., and will end at 12:30 p.m. or when all stakeholders have finished commenting, whichever comes first. Click here to register for the meeting (webcast option available).

Below are downloads related to this workshop:

Additional information, including meeting registration, is available on our Workshops and Events Webpage. DTSC will consider both verbal input at the public meeting and written comments submitted during the public comment period as we continue to refine our Priority Product definition and listing. We look forward to hearing from you.

SCP Priority Products