Pollutant Information: Pentachlorophenol 

About Pentachlorophenol

Category: Air pollutants

Pentachlorophenol (PCP) was used as a biocide in the timber and textile industries in the UK as it was effective in destroying insect eggs. Its use is now strictly limited by UK law. Pentachlorophenol is associated with both acute and chronic effects on human health through inhalation. Acute effects can lead to eye irritation as well as liver, blood and neurological effects. Chronic exposure can result in effects on the respiratory tract, immune system, liver, kidneys, blood as well as the eyes and nose. Practically all of the UK emission of PCP is from wood that has been previously treated with PCP, since emissions continue to occur over many years as that PCP is slowly volatilized. This source accounts for 99.99% of the 2021 total PCP emission.

» View and Download Pentachlorophenol emission summary data

Time series graph

Notable events

Start year End year Sector Information Impact
1990 2018 Wood processing Reduction in the use of PCP for wood preservation Decrease in emissions