The global paint and coatings industry is doing its part to build a safer, greener and more sustainable world. These were the observations of Luis Fernandez, Vice President and Global Business Leader for Rohm and Haas’s $2 billion Paint and Coatings Materials business, when he addressed ABRAFATI, the Brazilian Paint Manufacturers Association, late last week.
Fernandez noted that the term ‘sustainable development’ today is seen and heard everywhere, and pursued eagerly by responsible leaders in every industry. “And so it should be,” he said. “Industrial activity has a significant impact on economic development, social development and the environment around the world.”
He explained that the global paint industry has been making the shift to more environmentally advanced technologies for more than 50 years, when water-based, acrylic emulsions were introduced by Rohm and Haas for use in house paints. Today, clean water-based technologies are used around the world, accounting for about 70 percent of the total U.S. paint and coatings market; 30 percent and growing across Asia.
“Yet, while our neighbors and our customers want us to develop cleaner technologies, they also require that these new, greener products provide equivalent or better performance compared to traditional technologies,” said Fernandez. He noted that cutting-edge technologies – nanotechnology, bio-based, and more – are on the way. Just as important, Fernandez said water-based acrylic technology has advanced to the point that it is increasingly used in some of the toughest industrial coatings applications, where less desirable, solvent-based products have been traditionally used. These solvents create volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, which contribute to air pollution.
Fernandez also spoke about extensive community outreach and education programs that paint company and paint material suppliers operate across the globe. These include outreach and help in rebuilding after a natural disaster, to ongoing training programs that help build a strong network of professional painters and contractors who know how to bring quality products and services to their customers.
“Sustainable development is about meeting the needs of the present . . . and the needs of the future,” said Fernandez. “It’s about social responsibility, environmental protection, and healthy economic growth – to often-called ‘triple bottom lines’ of sustainable development. . . . I am proud and happy that our industry has seized the initiative and is responding to the challenges that creating a better world presents,” he continued. “We are making the world look better – and making a better world for ourselves and our children at the same time. This is what will make our industry sustainable for many years to come.”
Note: Rohm and Haas featured a number of environmentally advanced products at the ABRAFATI Show last week. To learn more follow these links: Avanse™ 412 low VOC, decorative resin, Avanse™ MV-100 high performance waterborne technology, Acrysol™ RM 895 solvent free, low VOC Rheology Modifier, Fastrack XSR extended use road marking technology that reduces VOCs by eliminating the need for epoxies and thermoplastics, Fastrack HD-21A low VOC coating for heavier than normal line marking for optimum reflectivity and sightline safety