Today's Law As Amended

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SB-47 Environmental health: artificial turf. (2015-2016)

As Amends the Law Today


 Article 3 (commencing with Section 115810) is added to Chapter 4 of Part 10 of Division 104 of the Health and Safety Code, to read:

Article  3. The Consideration of Alternatives for Artificial Turf Infill Act of 2016
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Thousands of schools, parks, and local governments have installed artificial turf fields throughout the state. It has allowed them to use fields year round, save water, and save money, among other benefits.
(b) Not all artificial turf fields are made from the same materials. While most artificial turf fields use less expensive crumb rubber infill from groundup used car and truck tires, many companies now offer artificial turf infill alternatives made from coconut fibers, rice husks, cork, sand, or virgin crumb rubber. Organic alternative infills can help reduce synthetic turf field temperatures on hot days by as much as 30 degrees compared to crumb rubber infill from used tires.
(c) The average artificial turf field uses approximately 20,000 groundup used tires to make crumb rubber infill. Tires contain many chemicals including, but not limited to: 4-t-octylphenol, acetone, arsenic, barium, benzene, benzothiazole, butylated hydroxyanisole, cadmium, carbon black, chloroethane, chromium, latex, lead, manganese, mercury, methyl ethyl ketone, methyl isobutyl ketone, n-hexadecane, naphthalene, nickel, nylon, phenol, phthalates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and zinc.
(d) In 2008, then Attorney General Jerry Brown sued the nation’s largest makers and installers of artificial turf fields for excessive lead levels after testing by the Center for Environmental Health found high concentrations of lead in their products.
(e) In 2009, the Los Angeles Unified School District banned turf fields containing infill from waste tire crumb rubber and instead chose alternative infills for their artificial turf fields.
(f) In 2010, then Attorney General Jerry Brown settled the case with the nation’s largest makers and installers of artificial turf fields requiring them to reformulate their products to reduce lead levels and established the nation’s first enforceable standards applicable to lead in artificial turf.
(g) The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment’s 2010 study on used tire crumb rubber in artificial turf fields reviewed chemical concentrations in the air above the fields and found that eight chemicals appear on the California Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer. Exposure via inhalation to five of these chemicals (benzene, formaldehyde, naphthalene, nitromethane, and styrene) gave increased lifetime cancer risks that exceeded one in one million. According to the study, the highest risk was from nitromethane, which could cause about nine cancer cases in a hypothetical population of one million soccer players. The study also found that two additional identified chemicals (toluene and benzene) appear on the California Proposition 65 list as developmental/reproductive poisons.
(h) At least 10 studies since 2007, including those by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission and the United States Environmental Protection Agency, have found potentially harmful lead levels in turf fibers and in rubber crumbs.
(i) A 2011 study titled, “An Evaluation of Potential Exposures to Lead and Other Metals as the Result of Aerosolized Particulate Matter from Artificial Turf Playing Fields” concluded that artificial turf can deteriorate to form dust containing lead at levels that may pose a risk to children.
(j) A 2012 study published in the scientific journal Chemosphere titled, “Hazardous organic chemicals in rubber recycled tire playgrounds and pavers”, showed the high content of toxic chemicals in these recycled materials and found that “uses of recycled rubber tires, especially those targeting play areas and other facilities for children, should be a matter of regulatory concern.”
(k) The Swedish Chemicals Agency found that waste tire crumb rubber contains several particularly hazardous substances and recommended that rubber granules from waste tires not be used in artificial turf.
(l) In 2013, The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) posted a disclaimer on the only limited study on tire crumb risk it had ever conducted. The EPA press release summarizing the study has been stamped with a notice that it was “outdated” and a new link has been appended to a statement stressing the need for “future studies” to enable “more comprehensive conclusions.”
(m) On May 19, 2015, the chair of the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Elliot Kaye, testified before the United States Congress that he no longer stands behind a 2008 statement from the commission that crumb rubber is safe to play on. His testimony described new federal studies underway. The CPSC also ordered an enforcement review of marketing of artificial turf products for children because the commission found lead levels in artificial sports fields above statutory limits in children’s products.
(n) A June 2015, study conducted at Yale University by Environment and Human Health, Inc., an organization of physicians and public health professionals, found that crumb rubber infill from used tires contain at least 96 chemicals. Of the 96 chemicals detected, a little under one-half had no toxicity assessments done on them for their health effects. Of the one-half that had toxicity assessments, 20 percent were probable carcinogens and 40 percent were irritants. The carcinogens found were 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole, 9,10-Dimethylanthracene, Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Fluoranthene, Heptadecane, 2-mercaptobenzothiazole, Phenol, 4-(1,1,3,3-tetramethylbutyl)-, Phenanthrene Carcinogen - polycyclicaromatic hydrocarbons, Phthalimide, Pyrene, 1-methyl-, Tetratriacontane, Pyrene, and Carbon Black. Of the irritants found, 24 percent were respiratory irritants, some causing asthma symptoms, 37 percent were skin irritants, and 27 percent were eye irritants.
(o) In June 2015, The Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery in collaboration with the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) agreed to spend nearly three million dollars ($3,000,000) to conduct a three-year study of potential health effects associated with the use of recycled waste tires in playground and artificial turf products. Making use of the toxicity criteria, monitoring data, and exposure pattern analysis results obtained in the study, OEHHA will conduct an assessment of potential health impacts associated with use of artificial turf and playground mats.
(p) While the public awaits the results of the OEHHA study and other studies being conducted at the national level and around the country, it is in the public’s best interest, especially from a children’s health perspective, that schools and local governments consider the various infill options when choosing to install artificial turf fields.
 For purposes of this article, “crumb rubber infill” means any composition material that contains recycled crumb rubber from waste tires and is used to cover or surface an artificial turf field.
 (a) Before a public or private school or local government may install, contract for the installation of, or solicit bids for a new artificial turf field containing crumb rubber infill within the boundaries of a public or private school or public recreational park, the public or private school or local government shall do all of the following:
(1) (A) Gather information from companies that offer artificial turf products that do not use crumb rubber infill.
(B) For purposes of this paragraph, information shall include, but not be limited to, information obtained from discussions with at least one company that offers artificial turf products that do not contain crumb rubber infill.
(2) Consider the use of material that does not contain crumb rubber infill in its artificial turf field project based on the information gathered pursuant to paragraph (1).
(3) Hold a public meeting that includes as a properly noticed agenda item a discussion of the installation of crumb rubber infill, with an opportunity for public comment. Members of the public wishing to make a comment during the public meeting shall be permitted to do so consistent with the established comment procedure for the meeting.
(b) Subdivision (a) shall not apply to any installation of an artificial turf field containing crumb rubber infill that commenced, or any contract for such an installation entered into, prior to January 1, 2017.
(c) Subdivision (a) shall not apply to any maintenance that is needed on an artificial turf field containing crumb rubber infill in existence as of January 1, 2017, or that is installed consistent with subdivision (b).
  This article shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2020, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2020, deletes or extends that date.