The methylating efficiency of dimethyl carbonate (DMC), dimethyl sulfate (DMS), methyl iodide (MeI), and methanol (MeOH) was assessed based on atom economy and mass index. These parameters were calculated for three model reactions: the O-methylation of phenol, the mono-C-methylation of phenylacetonitrile, and the mono-N-methylation of aniline. The analysis was carried out over a total of 33 different procedures selected from the literature. Methanol and, in particular, DMC yielded very favourable mass indexes (in the range 3–6) indicating a significant decrease of the overall flow of materials (reagents, catalysts, solvents, etc.), thereby providing safer greener catalytic reactions with no waste.
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