Proposition 65 Notice
What is California Proposition 65?
In 1986, California voters approved the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act known as Proposition 65. The purpose of Proposition 65 is to ensure that people are informed about exposure to chemicals known by the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects and/or other reproductive harm. A company with ten or more employees that operates within the State of California (or sells products in California) must comply with the requirements of Proposition 65. To comply, businesses are: (1) prohibited from knowingly discharging listed chemicals into sources of drinking water; and (2) required to provide a "clear and reasonable" warning before knowingly and intentionally exposing anyone to a listed chemical.
Proposition 65 mandates that the Governor of California maintain and publish a list of chemicals that are known to cause cancer, birth defects and/or other reproductive harm. The list, which must be updated annually, includes over 1000 chemicals, including many that are commonly used in the electronics industry. Although our manufacturing process is “lead-free,” it remains possible that small amounts of lead could be found components or subassemblies. Bisphenol A (BPSA) could be found in our plastic housings, lenses, labels or adhesives, and DEHP & DINP (phthalates) could be found in PVC wire coatings of our cables, housings, carrying cases, and power cords. Because we cannot guarantee that these chemicals are never present, we have elected to place the warning on our products to ensure compliance with California law and our customers’ right to know.
Can I trust that Nielsen-Kellerman's products are safe despite this warning label?
Nielsen-Kellerman ("NK") is the manufacturer of NK Sports products for rowing and paddling, Kestrel Instruments environmental and ballistics meters, and Blue Ocean Audio megaphones. This notice refers to all products from NK including the brands mentioned.
If a Proposition 65 warning is posted, it means that the business issuing the warning knows that one or more listed chemicals is merely present in its product. A warning must be given unless a business demonstrates that the exposure it causes poses "no significant risk."
With respect to carcinogens, the "no significant risk" level is defined as the level which is calculated to result in not more than one excess case of cancer in 100,000 individuals exposed over a 70-year lifetime. In other words, if you are exposed to the chemical in question at this level every day for 70 years, theoretically, it will increase your chances of getting cancer by no more than 1 case in 100,000 individuals so exposed.
With respect to reproductive toxicants, the "no significant risk" level is defined as the level of exposure which, even if multiplied by 1,000, will not produce birth defects or other reproductive harm. In other words, the level of exposure is below the "no observable effect level," divided by 1,000. (The "no observable effect level" is the highest dose level which has not been associated with observable reproductive harm in humans or test animals.) The California government has clarified that "The fact that a product bears a Proposition 65 warning does not mean by itself that the product is unsafe.” The government has also explained, “You could think of Proposition 65 more as a ‘right to know’ law than a pure product safety law." See http://oehha.ca.gov/prop65/background/p65plain.html.
A Proposition 65 warning means one of two things: (1) the business has evaluated the exposure and has concluded that it exceeds the "no significant risk level"; or (2) the business has chosen to provide a warning simply based on its knowledge about the presence of a listed chemical without attempting to evaluate the exposure. Proposition 65 does not clarify whether exposure is to be measured only in normal operation, or in the event of misuse such as intentionally damaging or incinerating an internal component and NK has not attempted to evaluate the level of exposure. While using the products as intended, we believe any potential exposure would be negligible or well within the “no significant risk” range. However, to ensure compliance with California law and our customers’ right to know, we have elected to place the Proposition 65 warning signs on our products.
For further information about California’s Proposition 65, please visit http://oehha.ca.gov/prop65/background/p65plain.html.