UPDATE: 7/21/20: The window for submitting comments to CARB is closed. But we will keep you updated as things unfold regarding fragrance emissions in California.
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is the primary state agency responsible to protect public health from the harmful effects of air pollution. One way they do this is to regulate emissions of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) from consumer products. VOC emissions (from consumer products and other sources) result in the development of ground level ozone, a major part of California’s smog problem. By regulating the amount of VOCs in consumer products, CARB is helping to reduce smog and reduce public exposure to the hazards associated with smog.
Fragrances are well known to be sources of VOCS in products. But they have always had a sweetheart deal with CARB. Corporations that make products which have a strict VOC limit are allowed to emit an extra 2% VOCs (above their limit) just to allow for fragrance in the product.This means the “2% fragrance exemption rule” both promotes the greater use of fragrance in consumer products, and increases emissions of these air pollutants.
The good news is that CARB is now considering eliminating the 2% exemption rule. But the fragrance industry is fighting back hard. In fact, CARB has already re-considered extending the sunset date of the rule from 2027 to 2031, to allow manufacturers even more time to adjust their products and fragrances.
CARB needs to hear from you – that you SUPPORT sunsetting the 2% fragrance exemption rule – and that it should happen by 2027 (or sooner!).