Friday, January 17, 2014

California adds diisononyl phthalate to carcinogen list

More chemicals added to list of
carcinogens in California.
The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment added a common plasticizer, diisononyl phthalate, to the list of carcinogens the agency maintains under Proposition 65, the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986.

The listing has been effective since Dec. 20, 2013.

OEHHA's Carcinogen Identification Committee considered the scientific evidence for listing diisononyl phthalate and butyl benzyl phthalate, another additive used to make materials softer and more pliable, as carcinogens under Proposition 65, at a Dec. 5 meeting in Sacramento.

The committee determined the scientific data “clearly’’ showed diisononyl phthalate could cause cancer, a Dec. 12 notice showed. As to butyl benzyl phthalate, the committee voted against adding it to the list of carcinogens.

Proposition 65 requires California to maintain a list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or reproductive toxicity. Businesses must provide clear warnings whenever exposing the public to an unsafe level of a listed substance.

OEHHA's next step will be to establish a safe exposure level for diisononyl phthalate.

Both phthalates are high production volume chemicals, meaning they are made in or imported into the U.S. in volumes of 1 million pounds or more annually, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP) is used in polyvinyl chloride products, including flooring tiles and carpet backing, and as additive in food packaging materials, medical devices, leather coatings, paint, adhesives and inks.

Since 2009, federal and California laws have restricted the sale and distribution of toys and child care articles containing BBP concentrations of more than 0.1 percent (1,000 parts per million).

Diisononyl phthalate (DINP) is a general purpose plasticizer used in a variety of products including vinyl flooring, wire and cable insulation, stationery, coated fabrics, gloves, toys, tubing, garden hoses, footwear, automobile undercoatings and roofing materials. The phthalate ester also is found in rubbers, inks, paints, lacquers and sealants.

California law bars the sale and distribution of toys and child care products with DINP concentrations that exceed 0.1 percent.

OEHHA's advisory committee listed DINP based on animal studies showing oral exposure increased the incidence of liver tumors, islet cell tumors of the pancreas and mononuclear cell leukemia (spleen) in male and female rats; kidney tumors in male rats; testicular cell cancer in male rats; and uterine tumors in female rats.

Several industry groups submitted written comments in November opposing the listing of DINP as a carcinogen.

OEHHA's hazard identification document for DINP didn't provide a balanced and complete summary of the scientific evidence, they said.

Source: Bloomberg News

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