News Brief


California has become the first state in the country to ban the manufacture, processing, and commercial distribution of two chemicals that have been shown to cause neurological and developmental damage to humans. The legislation affects two types of PBDEs (polybrominated diphenyl ethers), both of which are common flame retardants: The penta form is used as an additive in polyurethane foams, and the octa form is used in some plastics. The California ban is set to take effect in 2008, allowing manufacturers time to find alternatives. “When Washington is unable or unwilling to act, we must protect the health of our citizens,” declared Governor Davis. A European Union ban on these two PBDEs is set to take effect next year.


Published November 1, 2003

(2003, November 1). CA Bans PBDEs. Retrieved from

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