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California air board curbs household cleaning pollution

November 19, 2010 |  1:15 pm

AirpollutionThe California Air Resources Board voted Thursday to reduce the use of volatile organic compounds in 11 different types of household products. The new regulation is designed to reduce the amount of smog-forming emissions generated from the use of floor cleaner, metal polish, furniture polish, general purpose cleaner, oven cleaner and other products.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2014, manufacturers will no longer be able to use methylene chloride, perchloroethylene and trichloroethylene in many cleaning products sold in California. The Air Resources Board estimates the regulation will save 6.7 tons of smog-forming, volatile-organic-compound emissions per day -- the equivalent of taking 500,000 cars off the road. Doing so helps the state meet federal clean air standards.

"A lot of times we work to clean up emissions from machines the average person would never see, but this is something that would affect the products we use every day in our homes." said Candice Kim, senior campaign associate with the Coalition for Clean Air in L.A. "It’s a double benefit because we get improved indoor air quality making products safer for the home user, but we also get improved outdoor air quality."


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-- Susan Carpenter

Photo credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times