Transitional regulation for NMP (1-methyl-2-pyrrolidone) in the wire coating process expires on 9th May 2024

1-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP) is used in a variety of ways. NMP can be found in varnishes and resins as well as in natural and synthetic plastics. It is used as a solvent for pesticides and dyes. It can also be found in paint strippers as well as in the parquet laying sector as a solvent.

The EU Commission already adopted a restriction for NMPs in 2019, which was included as entry 71 in Annex XVII of the REACH Regulation.

The restriction stipulates that NMP as a substance and in mixtures in concentrations ≥ 0.3 % may not be placed on the market starting from 9th May 2020 unless the DNEL values (Derived No-Effect Level – derived exposure level below which the substance does not lead to adverse effects on human health) for workers (14.4 mg/m3 for inhalation, 4.8 mg/kg/day for dermal uptake) are complied with. The Derived No-Effect Level values apply to all uses according to REACH, even if the indicative occupational exposure limit value of the European Union and the national occupational exposure limit value according to TRGS 900 (40 mg/m³ in each case) permit a higher inhalation exposure.

A transitional regulation has been authorised for the use or placing on the market of NMPs as a solvent or reactant in the wire coating process. Binding compliance with the DNEL values is not required until 9th May 2024; however, the occupational limit value must not be exceeded during this transitional period.

The restriction of NMPs should be regarded as an opportunity to revise the corresponding risk assessment for the handling of NMPs. Although the occupational exposure limit value of TRGS 900 is still legally binding, the lower DNEL value should be applied as a self-imposed restriction. It is also stated in BekGS 409: “If the protective measures at the workplace do not ensure compliance with the DNEL, the risk assessment must be updated. The employer should be guided by the RMM [risk management measures] specified in the eSDS [extended safety data sheet] with the aim of complying with the DNEL.”

Our measuring facility for hazardous substances can also determine the inhalative DNEL value for NMP in your processes.


Starting from 9th May 2024, the transitional regulation for NMP in the wire coating process will no longer apply.

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