Whether you know it or not, federal and state regulators have imposed limits on VOC emissions, of which a number of products, from paint to engine degreasers and windshield washer fluids, have been reformulated to reduce their VOC levels. Additionally, there has been an effort to switch the public from oil-based paints and cleaning solvents (enamel, lacquer, mineral spirits, etc.) to water-based paints like latex. The paint industry has expanded the range of water-based finishes that are available to assist in the conversion. Sometimes it is not a voluntary switch. A number of states or urban areas have banned retail sales of certain oil-based products in an effort to combat smog.
Aerosol can spray-paints are frequently used for smaller jobs and touch-up painting. They rely on VOC-emitting propellants—gases used to expand and force out the paint when the valve is opened. The propellants have changed over the years, and the paint industry has more recently relied on a variety of hydrofluorocarbons to serve as propellants. To address VOCs in aerosol paints, both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state of California have limited the amount of propellants that can be used in spray paint.
Regulating paint has been a balancing act: making sure hobbyists and commercial entities have access to affordable, quality paints while protecting health and environment. A good source for additional information is: http://www.ccar-greenlink.org/paintrule.html