California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed AB 1817 into regulation, including to the rising record of state laws proscribing the usage of PFAS substances in quite a lot of shopper merchandise.
As of January 1, 2025, AB 1817 prohibits the manufacture, distribution, sale, or provide on the market within the state of “any new, not beforehand used, textile articles that include regulated” PFAS substances.
AB 1817 defines “textiles articles” as “textile items of a kind typically and ordinarily utilized in households and companies, and embrace, however aren’t restricted to, attire, equipment, purses, backpacks, draperies, bathe curtains, furnishings, upholstery, beddings, towels, napkins, and tablecloths.”
The regulation exempts:
- PPE or clothes gadgets for unique use by the US navy
- Carpets and rugs, and carpet and rug therapies (as these are already regulated beneath the California Safer Client Merchandise regulation)
- Automobiles and car parts, together with plane
- Boats and vessels, together with covers
- Sure chemical, pharma, and environmental applied sciences
- Stadium shades and architectural material buildings
It additionally comprises a carve out for “out of doors attire for extreme moist situations,” pushing the compliance date to January 1, 2028. However as of January 1, 2025, these merchandise have to be labeled with a “legible and simply discernable disclosure” stating “Made with PFAS chemical substances.”
The regulation applies to all “regulated” PFAS substances, that are outlined as PFAS substances which can be “deliberately added to a product and which have a practical or technical impact,” together with PFAS which can be intentional breakdown merchandise of an added chemical with a practical or technical impact.
AB 1817 doesn’t include an impartial enforcement scheme, similar to civil or prison penalties, and it doesn’t authorize a state company to promulgate implementing laws (which regularly embrace administrative enforcement provisions).
Within the absence of particular enforcement provisions, we’d anticipate public enforcers (the California Legal professional Basic and district or metropolis attorneys) to implement AB 1817 by means of California’s Unfair Competitors Legislation (UCL). Public enforcers can search civil penalties of as much as $2,500 per violation and injunctive aid. The Legal professional Basic and district attorneys have a observe file of working collectively to implement environmental legal guidelines within the state.
Personal plaintiffs can also search to implement AB 1817 by means of the UCL and the Client Authorized Treatments Act (CLRA), sometimes by means of shopper class actions. The final construction of claims might be that buyers wouldn’t have paid what they did had they identified the product contained PFAS; that the merchandise are unsafe as a result of they include PFAS; or, within the occasion a vendor makes sustainability claims in reference to merchandise, such claims are false as a result of the merchandise include PFAS. Class actions introduced beneath these theories sometimes search damages (solely beneath the CLRA), restitution, injunction, and attorneys’ charges.