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Cal/EPA’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Asssessment (OEHHA) Proposes Rulemaking Complimentary to DTSC’S Green Chemistry Program

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) introduced a proposed rulemaking today that is complimentary to the California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control(DTSC) work on green chemistry. The proposed rulemaking would add Chapter 54, “Green Chemistry Hazard Traits,” to the California Code of Regulations. The chapter focuses on a “framework for organizing information on chemical hazards for use by the Department in implementing Health and Safety Code section 25251 et seq. The framework is organized around four major categories of hazard traits: toxicological, environmental, exposure potential and physical.” (see chart below) Environmental endpoints as defined by the rulemaking are, “measured or otherwise observed adverse environmental effects in ecological systems, or in components of ecological systems, or in non-human organisms within ecological systems.” While toxicological endpoints are, “for a specific hazard trait is a measured or otherwise observed adverse effect in a biological system that indicates the presence of the hazard trait.”

While Prop 65 requires labels or consumer notification for products containing “carcinogens” or “reproductive toxins,” the new list of over 30+ hazard traits will eventually be combined with the green chemistry regulations and their associated lists of chemicals and products of concerns to trigger data call-ins and potential regulatory actions such as bans, recalls of inventory, substitution of ingredients, end of life stewardship requirements as well as labels under the green chemistry regulations.

Health and Safety Code section 25252 requires DTSC to evaluate and prioritize chemicals by developing criteria that include, but are not limited to, traits, characteristics, and endpoints, developed by OEHHA, for the Toxics Information Clearinghouse established under Health and Safety Code section 25256.1. 

A public hearing will be held on January 31, 2011, at 10:00 am in Sacramento. The written comment period for this rulemaking opens today and will conclude on February 15, 2011.  Written comments on the rulemaking can be submitted via mail or email to:


Fran Kammerer

Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment

P. O. Box 4010

Sacramento, California 95812-4010

Telephone: 916-445-4693


E-mail: fkammerer@oehha.ca.gov


For more information on the rulemaking visit: http://www.oehha.ca.gov/multimedia/green/gc121710.html