Investor Letter Supporting California Chemical Disclosure Legislation

On behalf of the Investor Environmental Health Network, and especially the undersigned California investors, I am writing to express our support for Senator Lara’s bill, SB 258, which requires cleaning product manufacturers to list ingredients on product labels and online to help protect consumers and workers.

The Investor Environmental Health Network is a collaborative partnership of investment managers concerned about the financial and public health risks associated with corporate policies for managing hazardous chemicals. IEHN, through dialogue and shareholder resolutions, encourages companies to adopt policies and practices that continually and systematically reduce and eliminate the toxic chemicals in their products and activities. IEHN members manage approximately $55 billion in assets.

Exposures to hazardous chemicals produce a tremendous drag on the US economy,[i] contributing to health problems throughout supply chains.

As widely diversified investors we are concerned about the impact of these costs on the value of our portfolios. More widespread use of safer chemicals and materials can reduce these costs.

Disclosure requirements enable consumers, employers and employees to make more informed choices, reducing their exposure to chemicals of concern. This can incentivize cleaning product manufacturers to favor safer chemicals. Companies producing and selling safer materials can gain market share, grow their top- and bottom-lines, enhance their brands and reduce risks.

Many well-known companies, such as Walmart, Target, Clorox and SC Johnson & Son have begun taking strong, yet voluntary, steps to reduce consumer exposures. These corporate actions are laudable, but they are not enough. Strong government regulation is essential to further lower exposures and reduce risks to businesses, customers, and the economy as a whole.

California has for many years been a pioneer in promoting public policies for safer chemicals that have led to greater protection across nation-wide marketplaces. SB 258 is a critically important addition to California’s protective policy portfolio.

Thank you again for your leadership on this important issue.

For the full list of signatories click here.

 

[i] T.M. Attina, et al., “Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals in the USA: a population-based disease burden and cost analysis”, The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, 2016, http://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(16)30275-3/abstract.

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