Toxic susbtances list: tetrachloroethylene

Tetrachloroethylene is no longer produced in Canada but continues to be imported, primarily for use as a chemical feedstock and as a solvent in the dry-cleaning and metal-cleaning industries. Approximately six kilotonnes was imported in 2002. Feedstock use results its transformation to another chemical, with minor releases during this process. Solvent uses are dispersive and do not result in its transformation or destruction and tetrachloroethylene is expected to enter the environment, primarily the atmosphere. Tetrachloroethylene has been measured in outdoor air and in the air inside homes within Canada, and has been detected in drinking water across the country and in contaminated surface waters in the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River. The substance is present in groundwaters in several provinces, often as a result of its inappropriate disposal and release from dry-cleaning and degreasing facilities or landfills.

Synonyms include: 1,1,2,2-tetrachloroethylene, tetrachloroethene, ethylene tetrachloride, carbon dichloride, carbon bichloride and perchloroethylene.

CAS (Chemical Abstract Service) registry number: 127-18-4

Risk Assessment


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Substances Management Information Line
Chemicals Management Plan
Gatineau, QC K1A 0H3

Telephone: 1-800-567-1999  (in Canada) or 819-938-3232
Fax: 819-938-3231


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