Governor wants new fire retardant rules
March 26, 2013
Chemical flame retardants in household furniture pose health hazards and “better ways” are available to provide public safety, Gov. Jerry Brown said Monday as he urged state regulators to take action against those “toxic” substances. (Sacramento Bee)
“Toxic flame retardants are found in everything from high chairs to couches and a growing body of evidence suggests that these chemicals harm human health and the environment,” the Democratic governor said in a prepared statement. “We must find better ways to meet fire safety standards by reducing and eliminating – wherever possible – dangerous chemicals.”
A proposed bill to accomplish this was defeated during last year’s legislative session; it sought to provide an alternative test for meeting state fire prevention standards.
Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, who introduced the failed bill, said the governor’s action “definitely shifts the debate.”
“He understands the serious risk to public health and the environment by the continued use of these toxic flame retardants,” Leno told reporters.
Critics of the current practice say the chemicals used are ineffective and cause cancer and other health problems.