For many decades, paint strippers have used hazardous solvents such as methylene chloride and N-Methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP) to effectively remove paints and coatings. But safety and environmental concerns have introduced an urgent need for environmentally-friendly alternatives. In March 2019, EPA banned the use methylene chloride in all paint removers for consumer use. However, its replacement, NMP, is now also deemed as a substance of very high concern (SVHC) and in jeopardy of being an option for paint stripping by regulatory forces.
The newly developed green paint stripper discussed here is free from methylene chloride and NMP. It achieves an environmentally-friendly profile by utilizing agricultural base stocks and recycled industrial solvents. It meets USDA criteria for biobased paint strippers and graffiti removers, and it complies to the VOC requirements of the California Reduced Emission Regulation for Consumer Products. This low odor and biodegradable paint stripper/graffiti remover effectively removes acrylic, alkyd, and urethane-based coatings, as well as marker ink comparably to petrochemical-based and NMP-containing products. In addition, the product contains corrosion inhibitors to prevent discoloration and flash rust on ferrous metals, aluminium, copper, and brass during and after paint removal.