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State unveils new limits on toxic chemicals in furniture

State unveils new limits on toxic chemicals in furniture
Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday announced new safety standards that will limit the use of certain toxic chemicals in furniture. (Anthony York)

Gov. Jerry Brown announced new safety standards for furniture on Thursday, limiting the use of certain flame-retardant chemicals that have been found to be toxic.

In a statement, Brown described the announcement as the culmination of the administration's yearlong effort to update the 40-year-old standards and reduce Californians' exposure to harmful compounds. In 2012, Brown ordered state agencies to revisit the standards amid concerns that substances found in items such as chairs and sofas could be harmful -- particularly to children.

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"Today, California is curbing toxic chemicals found in everything from high chairs to sofas," said Brown. "These new standards will keep the furniture in our homes fire-safe and limit unnecessary exposure to toxic flame retardants."

Furniture makers will have until Jan. 1, 2015 to comply with the new standards.

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Twitter: @anthonyyorklat

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