Regulatory Issues

Written on: March 1, 2021 by Doug Raymond

On Feb. 2, 2021, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) released its proposed amendments to the Consumer Products Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Regulation. The rule development for these amendments began in June 2018 with a review of the Consumer Products survey data. This was followed by five public workshops that ran from April 2019–November 2020. During this time, CARB worked with Industry in an attempt to further regulate Consumer Products to obtain the required VOC tonnage reduction. CARB is required to get 1–2 tons per day (TPD) of VOC emission reductions in the South Coast Air Basin by 2023 and 4–5 TPD VOC emission reductions in the South Coast Air Basin by 2031, which is inclusive of the 1–2 TPD. This equals 8–10 TPD statewide.

CARB staff is proposing to set the new or reduced VOC levels for the following categories:

Air Fresheners
• Manual Aerosol Air Freshener: (New category)—VOC limit 10% on 1/1/2023, reduced to 5% VOC on 1/1/2027.
• Automatic Aerosol Air Freshener: (New category)—VOC limit 30% on 1/1/2023.
• Concentrated Aerosol Air Freshener: (New category)—VOC limit 15% on 1/1/2023, reduced to 10% VOC on 1/1/2027.
• Total Release Aerosol Air Freshener: (New category)—VOC limit 25% on 1/1/2023, no future reduction at this time.
• As of 1/1/2023, the Single-Phase Aerosol Air Freshener at 30% VOC and the Double Phase Aerosol Air Freshener at 20% VOC categories will no longer be available.

Hair Care
• Hair Finishing Spray: (Existing category)—VOC limit reduced from 55% to 50%, effective 1/1/2023.
• Dry Shampoo: (Existing category)—New VOC limit of 55%, effective 1/1/2023, reduced to 50% VOC on 1/1/2029.
• Hair Shine & Temporary Hair Color: (Existing category)—VOC limit reduced from 55% to 50%, effective 1/1/2029.

Personal Fragrance Product (PFP)
• Aerosol PFP: (Less than 7% fragrance)—VOC limit 75% reduced to 70% on 1/1/2023, then to 50% by 2031.
• PFP: (Less than 7% fragrance)—VOC limit 75% reduced to 70% on 1/1/2023. Fragrance threshold then moved to 10% with a VOC limit of 50% by 1/1/2031.

• Crawling Bug Insecticide (Aerosol): (Existing category)—VOC limit lowered from 15% to 8%, effective 1/1/2030.
• Bed Bug Insecticide: (New category)—VOC limit 15%.

Fragrance Exemption
• Sunset Fragrance Exemption: (with the exception of a very few categories) by 1/1/2031.

Other Changes
• Prohibit the use of perchloroethylene, trichloroethylene methylene chloride and parachlorobenzotrifluoride (PCBTF) in the above categories as of 1/1/2023.
• Modify definition of Energized Electrical Cleaner.
• Changes to Alternative Control Plan (ACP) and Innovative Product Exemption (IPE). IPE changes to allow compressed gases.
• Addition of three compounds to the Maximum Incremental Reactivity (MIR).
• New Category: Plastic Pipe Adhesive at 60% VOC.
• Small use of Denatured Alcohol for use by public utilities.
• Changes to Method 310 (determines VOCs in aerosol coatings).

The Initial Statement of Reasons and several attachments were released on Feb. 2. Also, the 45-day public record was opened on Feb. 5, which means the public (i.e. Industry and non-governmental organizations [NGOs]) has 45 days to review these documents and comment before March 22, 2021. The CARB board Board will then have a meeting on March 25, 2021 at 9:00am PDT. The Board meeting may continue to March 26, if needed.

As I have been saying for months, if these amendments affect your company, you now have fewer than 45 days to comment. If you support CARB’s proposal, comment on this also. During the Board hearing, the public gets three minutes to testify—that is not a lot of time. I highly suggest you review the documents here. SPRAY