Legislators in the U.S. state of California have voted to temporarily increase the allowed concentration of heavy metals present in recycled glass packaging. In an article published on September 10, 2019, regulatory news provider Chemical Watch informed that bill SB 232 passed both the state assembly and senate. If signed by the governor, the permitted total concentration of lead, cadmium, mercury, and hexavalent chromium would increase from 100 to 200 parts per million (ppm) until January 1, 2024. The state’s senate is reported to have justified the increase arguing that “incidental lead derived from recycled materials used in making glass may disincentivize domestic glass recycling and reduce international import of recycled glass containers.”

In an article published by regulatory news provider Chemical Watch on October 2, 2019, California’s governor is reported to have vetoed the increase. While a “strong supporter” of increasing recycling efforts, the governor said that he does not “believe we should risk potential exposure to toxic substances during the process.” Permitted levels are therefore set to remain at 100 ppm.

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Chemical Watch (September 10, 2019). “California bill to amend toxics limits in recycled glass packaging.”

Lisa Martine Jenkins (October 2, 2019). “California governor vetoes bill amending toxics limits in recycled glass packaging.”


California Legislative Information (September 6, 2019). “SB-232 Hazardous substances: regulated metals: packaging materials.”