The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) announced a December 7th proposal that would ban certain uses of Trichloroethylene (“TCE”) pursuant to Section 6 of the Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”).

TCE is a volatile organic compound produced or imported into the United States with a use estimated to be around 250 million pounds per year.

EPA is proposing to prohibit the manufacture (including import), processing, and distribution in commerce of TCE for use in aerosol degreasing and spot cleaning in dry cleaning facilities. The proposal also requires manufacturers, processors and distributors to notify retailers and others in their supply chains of the prohibitions.

The basis for the EPA proposal is stated to be the agency’s identification of significant health risks associated with TCE in these activities. The agency states it has preliminary determined that these risks are unreasonable risks. Therefore, it is utilizing Section 6 of the TSCA to propose a ban on these uses.

A link to the proposed rule can be found here.