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« California license plates -- a metaphor for the state? | Main | 2012 resolutions/goals »

January 01, 2012


William Woody

It's worse than that. Because Proposition 65 does not penalize for posting a warning when no such chemicals are known to exist, but does penalize if a known chemical exists and the public is not warned about it, it is easier for a property owner to just post the Proposition 65 warning that the premises "may" contain nasty stuff, even if no such chemicals are known to exist.

Thus you'll see Prop 65 warnings at the entrances of shopping malls and office buildings where it is illegal to smoke indoors, and where normally no such chemicals would ever be present at any level of concentration that requires a warning.

In addition, if you go to California's web site, some of the "chemicals" which require a Proposition 65 warning include "Alcoholic beverages", "Aspirin" and "Salted Fish (Chinese-style)". So a Prop 65 sign on grocery stores is pretty standard, since they generally sell aspirin and alcoholic beverages--and on pharmacies, where oral contraceptives (also on the Prop 65 list) are sold.

So needless to say, Prop 65 warnings are pretty much universally ignored by those of us living in California.

(Here's the current list of chemicals that require Proposition 65 warnings. http://oehha.ca.gov/prop65/prop65_list/files/P65single111811.pdf)


And in addition to that the levels at which warning signs are required are (often?) so ridiculously low as to be 1) utterly benign, 2) completely undetectable, and/or 3) far below naturally occuring levels.

Prop 65 is the world's laughing stock.

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