ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced some new laws that will be going into effect in the new year. These laws concern protecting people and the environment from harmful chemicals.
“DEC prioritizes the health and well-being of New Yorkers and our environment, and the implementation of new laws for chemicals in everyday household products is part of our state’s ongoing commitment to protect communities,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “With the start of the new year, these stringent requirements will build upon our nation-leading efforts to prevent exposure to emerging contaminants.”
1,4 Dioxane in household, personal care, and cosmetic products
Starting December 31, 2022, New York will require a maximum allowable concentration of two parts per million (PPM) of 1,4-dioxane in household cleaning and personal care products and a 10 ppm limit for cosmetics. 1,4-Dioxane is a synthetic industrial chemical that’s been found the groundwater throughout the United States. DEC said the contaminant is extremely costly to clean up and remove from drinking water supplies.
PFAS in food packaging materials
Starting December 31, 2022, DEC is prohibiting intentionally-added PFAS in food packaging. PFAS are manmade chemicals that are found and do not break down easily in the environment, especially in water. The law applies to paper-based food packaging with direct food contact. PFAS were banned from food packaging as part of the Hazardous Packaging Act.
Toxic chemicals in children’s products
Starting January 1, 2023, DEC will be restricting the sale of children’s products with intentionally-added benzene, asbestos, or tris phosphate in New York. DEC said it is in the process of developing regulations to implement portions of the law. The law will include the specific product categories, which chemicals must be disclosed, and details on how to get a waiver from reporting or not prohibiting the sale.
Children’s products are defined as products for children 12 and under. The products include clothing, non-electronic toys, car seats, children’s bedding and mattresses, school supplies, furniture, and products to help with sleeping, teething, or eating. The law excludes electronic products, batteries, sports equipment, and science kits.