Methylene chloride, also known as dichloromethane (DCM), is a partially chlorinated C1-hydrocarbon of formula CH2Cl2.

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It is a clear, non-flammable liquid with a low boiling point of 40°C and a low evaporation energy (about 9 times lower than water), offers  good chemical stability and provides excellent solubility for a large range of materials. In contrary to PER and TRI it is biodegradable in aquatic systems.

 

The main applications of methylene chloride are in closed systems in industry, e.g. for the production of pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals, polymers and as extraction solvent.

ECSA has developed an online toolbox to provide users of chlorinated solvents with information about the safe & sustainable use of the products. Follow the link to the ECSA Product & Application Toolbox, a Guidance on Safe & Sustainable Use of Chlorinated Solvents: ECSA Product & Application Toolbox

For more information of Methylene Chloride please refer to the respective Health Profile and Product Safety Summary Document in the section Publications

A generic label for methylene chloride packaging are available here, which include up to date pictograms and hazard phrases, in accordance with CLP 1272/2008 EC. This includes all EU languages. 

Revision: 02/2018

Montreal Protocol Meeting - ECSA & HSIA side event

November 2017

DCM & the ozone layer
November 2017 

During this side event, we will provide you with scientific facts and figures on the worldwide production, emissions of the VSLS Dichloromethane (DCM) and its negligible contribution to ozone depletion.
We will consider the following criteria: global production by industry and emissions, global natural production, behavior and effect on the atmosphere, regulatory overview for DCM. The full paper is available here. A one-pager summary is also available.
More information

 

TRI Authorisations granted

September 2018

Trichloroethylene (TRI) can be used safely under controlled conditions. Five authorisations have been granted to BlueCube Germany (a subsidiary of Olin) to continue to produce TRI for specific uses, for example Industrial Parts Cleaning. Customers of this producer can use TRI for these applications under the conditions set by the EU Commission and the defined risk management measures.


 

UBA PMT criteria published

February 2018

The German Environment Agency (UBA, Umweltbundesamt) has published the assessment of "Persistence, Mobility and Toxicity (PMT)" with the desire to protect drinking water sources. Applying conservative criteria for PMT as defined by UBA, perchloroethylene (PER) and trichloroethylene (TRI) appear as number 2 and 3 on the report. UBA also aims to establish PMT as an equivalent concern to identify SVHC substance for authorisation under REACH. ECSA does not consider SVHC identification using PMT criteria as the appropriate tool to improve drinking water quality due to this being a pure hazard based approach and thus does not consider risk. TRI is already listed in Annex XIV (authorisation) and today PER is handled almost exclusively in closed systems with no intentional emission to water or soil. For further information see the ECSA position paper on PER here.


 

New Study on Dichloromethane

February 2018

Together with HSIA, ECSA supported a study to clarify the mode of action of cancer formation for Dichloromethane (DCM). The study results have been published end of 2018. The outcome of the study shows that below the threshold there is no risk of cancer formation related to DCM.

The full paper is available here.