May 12, 2023
By John Kowalski, senior regulatory specialist, Supply Chain Team, UL Solutions
Methylene chloride, which is also known as Dichloromethane, is a volatile chemical used in a wide range of industrial, commercial, and consumer products including adhesives, sealants, degreasers, cleaners, and automotive products. Because of its adverse health effects, Methylene chloride is subject to numerous state, federal, and international regulations that restrict and regulate its use.
In March 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule under Section 6 of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to prohibit the manufacture, import, processing, and distribution of Methylene chloride for consumer paint and coating removal. On May 3, 2023, EPA published a proposed rule that would prohibit most ongoing uses of Methylene chloride and regulate the remaining uses.
More specifically, the proposed rule would:
- prohibit the manufacture, processing, and distribution in commerce of Methylene chloride for consumer use;
- prohibit most industrial and commercial uses of Methylene chloride;
- require a workplace chemical protection program (WCPP) which would include an Existing Chemical Exposure Limit (ECEL) and exposure monitoring for certain continued conditions of use;
- require recordkeeping and downstream notification for several conditions of use; and,
- provide certain time-limited exemptions from requirements for uses of Methylene chloride that would otherwise significantly disrupt national security and critical infrastructure.
EPA is accepting public comments on the proposed rule until July 3, 2023. It is also hosting a webinar on the proposed rule on June 7, 2023 at 1:00 PM EDT. To register for the webinar, visit Eventbrite.
Recommended action items
- Review the proposed rule;
- Attend the webinar; and
- Consider submitting comments.
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