The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a proposed rule to ban methylene chloride for commercial use in paint removers and most other products. The EPA has already banned most consumer sales as of August 2019.
Methylene chloride, also called dichloromethane or DCM, and is used for paint and coating removal, metal cleaning and degreasing, plastic processing and adhesive manufacturing. Consumers exposed to the chemical may risk dizziness or potentially fatal nervous system disorders.
The EPA is proposing to prohibit most industrial and commercial uses of methylene chloride, including in automotive care products (cleaners, degreasers, air conditioner fluids, etc.). For the remaining exempted uses (e.g., military and airline applications), the agency would require a workplace chemical protection program along with recordkeeping and downstream notification requirements. The ban would be fully implemented 15 months after the EPA issues a final rule.
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