Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) are internationally regulated by the Montreal Protocol of 1987 and its succession amendments.
These are implemented into European legislation by the regulation EC 1005/2009 on substances that deplete the ozone layer, valid from 1.1.2010. This regulation supersedes the former regulation EC 2037/2000. Consult this Regulation here.
The new as well as the old regulation have no impact on the three chlorinated solvents DCM, TRI and PER and their use is not restricted in any means by this legislation. However, two other substances being manufactured by the producers of chlorinated solvents are affected, i.e. Carbon Tetrachloride (CTC) and, starting from 2010, Chloromethane or Methyl Chloride (MeCl).
CTC shows a stratospheric ozone depleting potential (ODP) of 1.1 (reference: R 11 = 1), therefore its manufacture, recycling, uses, volumes for certain uses, disposal, import and export of CTC (or mixtures or wastes containing CTC > 1 %) have been regulated since the implementation of ODS legislation. It is mainly used as an industrial intermediate and only a small fraction as a special solvent in a few industrial processes or as a laboratory solvent. It is no more allowed to use CTC for the synthesis of other ozone depletion substances like FCHCs (R11 o R12), HFCs, FBCs and halons which were used in previous times as refrigerants or fire extinguishing agents. Emissions during manufacture, transport, use and disposal must be minimised by application of strictly controlled conditions (closed systems).
Each participant in the whole supply chain is obliged to report annually relevant statistical data to the European and national authorities. For further details please see the ODS regulation EC 1005/2009 and the website of the European ODS secretariat. Additional national restrictions may exist in certain countries.
MeCl (methyl chloride) is almost exclusively used as an industrial intermediate and only a small fraction as a low temperature solvent in special industrial processes or as a laboratory reagent. It is virtually not relevant as an ODS due to its very low stratospheric ozone depleting potential (ODP) of 0.02 (reference: R 11 = 1) and its use under practically emission free strictly controlled conditions as MeCl is a gas (stored and transported pressure liquefied) that needs to be handled in closed systems.
Thus man-made industrial emissions are not relevant compared to the several million tons that are naturally produced by algae, bacteria, fungi and certain plants in the oceans and in soil all over the world.
MeCl is a 'new substance' under the ODS regulation meaning that its manufacture, use, import and export are not restricted in any way. Nevertheless, manufacturers, importers and exporters (but not users) of MeCl or mixtures containing > 1 % MeCl are obliged to report annually statistical data to the European and national authorities within the first quarter of a new year.
Last update: 06/2014