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BPA Being Considered for Listing as Proposition 65 Female Reproductive Toxicant

On May 7, 2015, the Developmental and Reproductive Toxicant Identification Committee (DARTIC) will consider the listing of Bisphenol A as a Proposition 65 female reproductive toxicant, under the law’s State’s Qualified Experts listing mechanism.  The meeting follows the release of related Hazard Identification Materials by the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment for public notice and comment on February 20, 2015.

The DARTIC is one of two committees of the OEHHA Science Advisory Board.  (The other is the Carcinogen Identification Committee.)  Members are experts in designated fields and appointed by the California Governor.  Under Proposition 65, the DARTIC advises the Governor and OEHHA on a number of matters and is empowered to “render an opinion, pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 25249.8 of [Proposition 65], as to whether specific chemicals have been clearly shown, through scientifically valid testing according to generally accepted principles, to cause reproductive toxicity.”  This “clearly shown” standard is the key criterion for listing chemicals under Proposition 65.

The primary focus of the upcoming DARTIC meeting likely will be the Food and Drug Administration’s recent evaluations of BPA studies, which establish that BPA is not a female reproductive toxicant.  A number of studies in the BPA Hazard Identification Materials purport to demonstrate female reproductive toxicity effects resulting from BPA exposure; however, those studies do not meet the DARTIC criteria for “scientifically valid testing according to generally accepted principles,” and do not support a causal connection between BPA exposure and female reproductive toxicity meeting the statutory and regulatory criteria for listing.

BPA has been the subject of controversy, especially in the media, for the last few years.  The upcoming meeting likely will reflect that controversy. Hopefully good science, and adherence to statutory and regulatory listing criteria, will prevail.

Ann Grimaldi

About Ann Grimaldi

Ms. Grimaldi maintains a diverse environmental law practice focusing on chemical and product regulation and litigation defense. Her practice areas include Proposition 65, California's Safer Consumer Products Regulations, California's Rigid Plastic Packaging Container Act and the federal Toxic Substances Control Act. Ms. Grimaldi graduated from the University of California Hastings College of the Law magna cum laude and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Bacteriology from University of California, Davis. Prior to attending law school, she worked as a research assistant in laboratories at the University of California, San Francisco Cancer Research Institute and at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine.

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