EPA Evaluates Potential Exposures to Paint-removal Chemical NMP
EPA’s final risk assessment for N-Methylpyrrolidone (NMP), a chemical commonly used for paint and coating removal, evaluated several exposure scenarios covering both worker and consumer uses. The risk assessment indicates that duration of use and a product’s concentration of NMP both drive risk associated with NMP use. According to EPA, short-term exposures (1–2 hours) to products containing 25 percent or less of NMP result in no risk. However, the agency identifies risks from acute and chronic exposures for those who use products containing higher concentrations of the chemical.
NMP is a common alternative to methylene chloride, or dichloromethane (DCM). EPA’s final risk assessment for DCM was released in August 2014, and indicated health risks to both workers and consumers who use products containing the chemical. According to the agency’s press release, EPA is considering a variety of voluntary and regulatory actions to reduce risks and address concerns regarding NMP and DCM.
This risk assessment was developed as a part of EPA’s Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Work Plan, which identified chemicals for review and assessment of potential risks to human health and the environment.