Are You Ready? It’s Time to Comply with the California Air Resources Board’s New Reporting Requirements


Are you ready?  It is time to comply with the California Air Resources Board’s (“CARB”) new reporting requirements– The 2013 Consumer & Commercial Products Survey.  All companies selling “chemically formulated consumer and commercial products in or into California MUST report their 2013 sales and formulation data. Under California law, CARB is authorized by law to collect data about chemically formulated products and from time to time gathers information through mandatory surveys.  The last such survey that included reporting for cosmetic products was in 2007 for 2006 data.

The purpose of the 2013 Survey is to gather current information on VOC, low vapor pressure VOC (LVP-VOC), and greenhouse gas (GHG) content from consumer and commercial products sold or supplied for use in California.  The Survey will also assist CARB in determining the feasibility of further reducing consumer product emissions, updating the consumer products emissions inventory, and evaluating emissions trends for consumer products.

The Survey requirements are detailed and require reporting of a wide variety of chemically formulated consumer and commercial products, even if those products do not contain any volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or contain low VOCs.  CARB has hosted informational webinars regarding the Survey and will be doing one through the Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers and Distributors trade association tomorrow.

The 2013 Survey officially started on September 1, 2014, but the online reporting system went live today, January 5, 2015.  All 2013 data must be reported to CARB by March 2, 2015. The Survey requires Responsible Parties to report detailed information for each product sold or supplied for use in California during Calendar Year 2013, including product formulas and unit sales.

Although in the past, CARB surveys have been limited to VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) emitting products, such as hairsprays and styling products, the 2013 Survey applies to all products sold or supplied for use in the state of California, including cosmetic and personal care products.

Failure to file a Survey may result in significant fines of $10,000 per violation, per day.

CARB has developed a list of pre-screening questions to help companies determine if they are required to submit survey data to CARB.  In general, each responsible party listed on the label of a consumer product that was sold or supplied for use in California during the calendar year, and falls into a category listed on that year’s Survey Category List, is required to report data to CARB.  Notably, this includes out-of-state companies!

The categories of consumer products that are subject to reporting are comprehensive:  California Air Resources Board 2013 Survey – List of Survey Categories.  Some personal care product highlights from this list include: Antiperspirants and deodorants, body, hand and face cleaners, eyeglass and contact lens care products, facial and body treatments, fragrance products, hair care products, health use products, colored cosmetics, nail care products, oral care products, shaving products, and pet care products.  In addition, pesticide products such as anti-microbial agents and insect repellants as well as Household products such as air fresheners, odor removers/eliminators, other air scented products, arts and crafts supplies, cleaners and degreasers, dishwashing products, fabric, carpet and upholstery care products, food-related sprays and aerosol products, fuels and lighter materials, garden and lawn care products, laundry products, miscellaneous household products, and office supply products.

With such a broad array of products, it is expected that thousands of companies will be required to report data.  For more information, you may visit CARB’s Survery page here.

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