Methylene chloride turns into carbon monoxide and can be inhaled even when those using it wear a mask. It can cause asphyxiation and heart attacks and has been connected to some cancers, UPI reported.
Environmental groups have put pressure on hardware stores to stop selling products that contain the chemicals. The Environmental Protection Agency had plans to ban paint strippers that contained methylene chloride, as an amendment to the Toxic Substances Control Act, but the current administration's EPA leaders delayed the ban to review the argument, UPI reported.
The EPA announced earlier this month that it is going ahead with the ban of methylene chloride, saying that it will use the previous risk assessments to ban the chemicals for private use, but will allow it in commercial furniture refinishing, The New York Times reported.
It has not said how it could regulate NMP.
The Halogenated Solvents Industry Alliance says that banning methylene chloride from products would mean lost jobs, and say that more warnings are needed instead. They also claim that paint strippers without the chemicals are not as effective, UPI reported.