SACRAMENTO, Calif. (March 18, 2016) — A California state senator has introduced a bill that would create severe restrictions on the use of zinc or zinc oxide in tires and potentially ban the sale of tires in the state that contained more than a yet-to-be-specified amount of zinc by weight.
Zinc oxide producers, however, say the bill is based on faulty premises and unrealistic projections of zinc levels in California state waterways.
Sen. Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica, introduced California Senate Bill 1260 on Feb. 18. As of now, SB 1260 is short on details that will be filled in later.
Zinc or zinc oxide is used in tire manufacturing as a catalyst in the curing process to increase durability, according to a fact sheet from Mr. Allen's office.
The bill states that zinc and certain alloys of zinc are toxic to many microscopic and other aquatic organisms. The fact sheet refers specifically to some species of algae, crustaceans and salmonids.