Environment & Natural Resources

By email dated December 14, 2012, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) withdrew its controversial direct final rule requiring the reporting of existing and unpublished health and safety data for cadmium and cadmium compounds used in consumer products pursuant to section 8(d) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). In its email, EPA admitted that "there is significant confusion and uncertainty within certain industrial sectors concerning the rule." EPA went on to indicate that it "will withdraw the immediate final rule and will sign a Federal Register notice announcing this decision no later than the January 2, 2013, effective date of the immediate final." EPA will be considering the questions and concerns raised in response to the immediate final rule and next steps with regard to this rule.


Continue Reading EPA Reverses Course and Promises to Withdraw TSCA Section 8(d) Cadmium Rule

Although not approved by the FDA, triclosan is a common antibacterial agent in a number of household cleaning and personal hygiene products sold in the United States, including soaps, deodorants, hand-sanitizers, toothpastes, and mouth wash. In recent years, manufacturers have also expanded the use of triclosan as an antimicrobial in cosmetics, socks, workout clothes, and

On July 27, 2012, California released a revised draft of its Safer Consumer Products Regulations—commonly known as the "Green Chemistry Initiative." The proposed regulations establish a process for California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and product manufacturers to assess whether consumer products containing certain "chemicals of concern" can be made with safer ingredients. Once

Readers of the Retail Law Observer are invited to join us on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. EDT for a complementary webinar entitled “Is California a Canary in the Coalmine? Emerging Trends and the Future of Chemical Regulation in California.” I will moderate the panel, which will include Crowell & Moring partners Warren

Numerous localities (most recently Montgomery County, Maryland) have adopted taxes on checkout bags at retail establishments. Statewide taxes have not yet been adopted but are under consideration, and even Federal legislation has been introduced that would impose such a tax. The purpose of the taxes is not so much to raise revenue as to discourage

Advertising the environmental benefits and attributes of consumer products has become an increasing trend in recent years as companies learn that consumers value “green” goods and services. To address compliance issues encountered in making these types of marketing claims, regulators are formulating guidance for businesses. While the U.S. is in the process of revising its environmental marketing Green Guides, the U.K. has published its new Green Claims Guidance. Both the U.S. and U.K. have addressed similar issues in their respective guidance documents.

The U.K.’s Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (“Defra”) published the revised Green Claims Guidance on February 2, 2011, updating previous guidance published in 2003. The Green Claims Guidance is directed at anyone who produces, sells, markets, or advertizes products or services in the U.K.


Continue Reading Revised U.K. Green Claims Guidance

California has delayed the effective date of new regulations drafted to implement the state’s Green Chemistry Initiative. As discussed in our blog post of November 22, 2010, California planned to implement the regulations on January 1, 2011. If the regulations had been implemented on that date, how companies designed and manufactured consumer products sold, offered for sale, distributed, supplied, or manufactured for use in California would have changed dramatically.


Continue Reading California Delays Implementation of Green Chemistry Initiative

Extended Product Responsibility (EPR) Programs Take Effect and Are Subject of Pending Legislation in California

The Summary: Retailers selling any thermostats to customers in California are expected to check the website of a state agency to see whether particular manufacturers have been listed as failing to comply with a 2008 state law mandating collection programs

[image courtesy of flickr user Flying Cloud]
Case: Viva! Int’l Voice for Animals v. Adidas Promotional Retail Operations, Inc., No. S140064 (Cal. Sup. Ct. 7/23/07)

The One Sentence Summary: California Supreme Court rejected Adidas’ argument that federal law not prohibiting importation of kangaroo products preempted California’s ban on products made