SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A bill that would place a temporary ban on the installation of athletic turf and playground surfacing containing recycled scrap tires has died in committee, reports Tire Business.
Senate Bill 47, sponsored by California Sen. Jerry Hill (D-13th District), would have prohibited the installation of rubber turf or grants funding its installation while the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) conducted a study to determine the possible adverse health effects of the material.
SB 47 was held in the California Senate Committee on Appropriations after a recent hearing. This means that, under the rules of the California Senate, the bill can no longer be considered, according to FieldTurf, a Montreal-based artificial turf manufacturer.
Sales of artificial turf in California have exploded in recent years, spurred in large part by the state’s four-year drought. Responding to the drought, local and regional water agencies have been urging property owners to replace their turfgrass lawns with drought-tolerant landscapes. Many property owners have responded by taking out their turfgrass lawns and replacing them with fake turf.
Senator Hill floated Senate Bill 47, entitled The Children’s Safe Playground and Turf Field Act of 2015, because of concerns over the use of crumb rubber, commonly used in many brands of synthetic turf. There are concerns that the crumb rubber may be unhealthy, especially for children who play on playgrounds or sports fields covered with artificial turf.