TIA to Speak at California Green Chemistry Conference

March 21, 2013 | Jennifer Gibbons, director of State Government Affairs at the Toy Industry Association (TIA), is slated to speak at the Prop. 65 Clearinghouse Green Chemistry Conference on April 9, 2013 in San Francisco, CA.

The conference is designed to prepare its audience of legal, business, state government and NGO representatives for a shifting regulatory environment due to California’s Green Chemistry Initiative (CGCI), as well as similar regulations reflected both nationally and internationally. CGCI is a six-part initiative aimed at creating a framework process to prioritize and regulate the use of “chemicals of concern” in consumer products. While two of the six parts were passed in 2008 and are currently being implemented, four parts remain a discussion item on the California Department of Toxic Substances Control’s agenda.

Gibbon’s presentation will reiterate the toy industry’s position that a state-specific approach to regulating the use of chemicals of concern in consumer products becomes problematic when that approach conflicts with existing strict federal requirements.

“Of concern is the potential for the Green Chemistry Initiative to result in complex and costly compliance procedures that increase costs for companies, consumers and the state and threaten California jobs, which would ultimately undermine any benefits the regulations hope to provide,” says Gibbons.

Similar programs have been adopted by Washington State and Maine, and green chemistry legislation is being considered in Connecticut, Minnesota and Oregon. TIA advocates that any green approach must take into account accepted exposure and risk criteria for chemicals of concern, and foster the creation of new “safer alternatives” that are commercially feasible and guarantee the same safety and performance levels currently achieved. 

Gibbons will address the challenges these new state regulatory programs pose for the toy industry during a breakout section panel entitled “States’ Green Chemistry Regulations: What Businesses Need to Know to Survive This Piecemeal Approach.” She will be joined on the panel by Diana Graham of Keller and Heckman LLP; Tim Shestek of the American Chemistry Council; and Ken Zarker from Washington State’s Department of Environment and Conservation. The discussion will be moderated by Maureen Gorsen of Alston + Bird LLP.

The conference will be held at the City Club of San Francisco from 9:00 to 5:30pm, with the "States' Green Chemistry Regulations" panel scheduled from 5:00 to 5:30 pm. For those interested in attending the conference, registration is now open. For more information, visit the Prop. 65 Clearinghouse website or contact TIA's Jennifer Gibbons (916.594.9432).