Somach Simmons and Dunn, Attorneys at Law Somach Simmons & Dunn | Attorneys at Law

Subscribe to our eAlerts

Please complete the form below to subscribe and recieve our monthly eAlerts via email.

October 25, 2022  |  Written by Michelle E. Chester

End of Session Summary of PFAS Legislation in California: New Laws Ban PFAS in Textiles and Cosmetics, but Newsom Vetoes PFAS Reporting Requirement

The 2022 California legislative session, which closed in August, included three bills aimed at addressing sources of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). PFAS describe a large category of man-made chemical compounds that repel water, dirt, oil, and grease. The chemical properties of PFAS have made them particularly desirable for use in food packaging, stain- and water-repellant fabrics, and nonstick products. However, PFAS’s unique chemical properties also make them resistant to degradation in the environment, earning them the moniker of “forever chemicals.” PFAS have been found to be highly mobile in the environment, susceptible to traveling through soil and seeping into groundwater or to traveling long distances through the air. The tendency of PFAS to travel through the environment and bioaccumulate in plants and animals is of particular concern because of the association between exposure to PFAS and adverse health effects.

The PFAS bills in the 2022 legislative session focused on two goals: (1) limiting sources of PFAS to prevent the chemicals from ever entering the natural or human environment; and (2) tracking and publicly reporting the use of PFAS in consumer products. As discussed below, Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law two bills on September 29, 2022 banning PFAS in textiles and cosmetics, but vetoed a bill to require annual reporting of PFAS usage in products sold or imported into California.

Assembly Bill 1817 (Chapter 762, Statutes of 2022) – Ban on PFAS in Textiles

Assembly Bill 1817 prohibits the manufacturing, distribution, selling, or offering for sale any new textile articles that contain “regulated PFAS,” which are defined as PFAS that are intentionally added in manufacturing or PFAS above certain specified concentrations. With a limited exception for personal protective equipment, the “textiles” regulated under the new law include fabrics and fibers used in clothing, accessories, and household goods. The law goes into effect January 1, 2025.

Legislative bill analyses state that PFAS in drinking water are an escalating concern and the presence and persistence of PFAS in drinking water supplies remains a serious source of exposure. These analyses also state that the intended purpose of the legislation is to protect consumers and the environment from the hazardous impacts of PFAS by preventing further PFAS contamination in drinking water systems.

Assembly Bill 2771 (Chapter 804, Statutes of 2022) – Ban on PFAS in Cosmetics

Assembly Bill 2771 prohibits the manufacturing, selling, delivering, holding, or offering for sale any cosmetic product that contains intentionally added PFAS. The cosmetics regulated under the new law include a wide variety of products applied to the human body for cleansing, beautifying, altering appearance, or otherwise promoting attractiveness. The law goes into effect January 1, 2025.

Legislative bill analyses detail the process by which PFAS in personal care products are washed off and, because conventional wastewater treatment cannot remove PFAS, eventually end up in surface and groundwater sources used as drinking water. By eliminating PFAS in the manufacturing stage, the Legislature aims to stop PFAS from entering the environment during product use and disposal.

Assembly Bill 2247 – PFAS Reporting Requirement

Assembly Bill 2247 would have required the implementation of a publicly accessible database regarding products containing intentionally added PFAS. However, Governor Newsom vetoed the bill on the grounds that it may be potentially duplicative of the existing Safer Consumer Products Program and that it may be premature based on the ongoing rulemaking by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to require reporting of PFAS. The Governor’s veto statement does not address the water quality impacts of PFAS, and instead cites the large estimated cost of implementing the proposed legislation.

For additional information on this issue please contact Michelle Chester at For more information about the 2022 California legislative session, see the news alert “2022 California Legislative End of Session Highlights” by Kelley M. Doyle.

Somach Simmons & Dunn provides the information in its Environmental Law & Policy Alerts and on its website for informational purposes only. This general information is not a substitute for legal advice, and users should consult with legal counsel for specific advice. In addition, using this information or sending electronic mail to Somach Simmons & Dunn or its attorneys does not create an attorney-client relationship with Somach Simmons & Dunn.

Read more news and alerts »