PPG, Kelly-Moore to Discontinue Paint Stripper


Two more paint companies have confirmed that they are discontinuing the sales of paint strippers containing methylene chloride and NMP.

Bloomberg reports that both Kelly-More Paint Co. and PPG have confirmed that the sales of products continuing those substances are being discontinued.

What’s Happening

PPG spokesperson Mark Silvey confirmed to the publication in an email that the manufacturer has removed the two chemicals from almost all of its paint removers and is working to eliminate them from a few products that are still being sold outside the U.S. and Canada.

The two join a host of other companies and retailers who have announced a phasing-out of the chemicals over the past few months.

In June, coatings manufacturer The Sherwin-Williams Company, along with box retailer Home Depot, announced that they would be discontinuing paint strippers that contain the products. Lowe’s announced the same news a month before that.

Sherwin’s decision came after a letter was penned to the company—by groups including the Natural Resources Defense Council; Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families; and Mind the Store—urging Sherwin to “take immediate action to phase out the sale of paint removers that contain the chemicals methylene chloride and N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP).”

Sherwin announced the changes via a memo from Corporate Communications Director Mike Conway, as well as with a tweet, which said, “Our customers are our #1 priority at Sherwin-Williams, so we are eliminating methylene chloride paint strippers from our stores. We have several effective alternatives available to serve your project needs.”

Previous Industry Reponses

Industry reaction to the chemicals has heightened over recent years, and in May the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it had decided to move forward on an original ruling on the use of methylene chloride.

Aleksandr Volunkov

The two join a host of other companies and retailers who have announced a phasing-out of the chemicals over the past few months.

The EPA said that it:

  • intends to finalize the methylene chloride rulemaking;
  • is not re-evaluating the paint stripping uses of methylene chloride and is relying on its previous risk assessments; and
  • is working to send the finalized rulemaking to the White House Office of Management and Budget shortly.

The previous risk assessment that the announcement referred to took place in January 2017, when the agency proposed prohibiting the consumer and commercial paint-stripping uses for the chemical.

While consumer and environmental groups and relatives of individuals killed or sickened by exposure to the chemical have lobbied hard for the ban, some industry groups argue that methylene chloride still has a place in paint removal when safely handled.

“When used as directed, [methylene chloride strippers] are the best products for efficient and effective paint removal,” the Halogenated Solvents Industry Alliance, which produces the chemical, said in a statement earlier this month. “These paint strippers have been safely used by consumers for more than 60 years.”

The HSIA noted that it does support a ban on the strippers in bathtub refinishing because of the lack of adequate ventilation in such situations.

The American Coatings Association has reportedly come out in opposition to outright bans on the chemicals right now.


Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Business matters; Chemical stripping; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); EPA; Good Technical Practice; Home Depot; Kelly-Moore; Latin America; Lowe's; Methylene chloride; North America; PPG; Sherwin-Williams

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