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Court Upholds California Standard for Furniture Flammability

Victory: Consumers across the country will soon have option of buying furniture that is both less flammable and less toxic
Mother and child on a sofa.

Flame retardants easily migrate into household dust and indoor air, and have been linked to a range of adverse health effects, including reduced IQs in children and impaired fetal and infant development.

Max Riesgo / Shutterstock
August 29, 2014
Sacramenta, CA —

Today the Sacramento Superior Court ruled to uphold the State of California's new standard on furniture flammability. Chemical corporation Chemtura, a producer of furniture flame retardant chemicals, challenged the standard. Earthjustice represented the California Professional Firefighters, Center for Environmental Health, Friends of the Earth, Natural Resources Defense Council, Physicians for Social Responsibility.

The following is a statement from Earthjustice attorney Irene Gutierrez:

"We are representing the California Professional Firefighters and public health and environmental health groups who defended the state of California's new furniture flammability standard because this standard will save lives and protect firefighters and families alike, and it will stand up to real-world fire scenarios.

"We are gratified that the Court saw through Chemtura's transparent attempt to invalidate a regulation that provides greater protection for firefighters and the general public so that Chemtura can continue to sell toxic flame retardant chemicals to furniture manufacturers. As a result of this ruling, consumers across the country will soon have the option of buying furniture that is both less flammable and less toxic. And, as a result of the adoption of SB 1019 by the California Legislature earlier this week, manufacturers and retailers will have to disclose which furniture contains flame retardants so that consumers can make informed choices about what they're purchasing."