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From a decorative coating’s perspective
It is undeniable that the climate crisis has truly arrived at our front door in the Asia Pacific, presenting an existential threat to many countries in the region. The rise in heat waves, increases in flooding, yearly bushfires together with the loss of biodiversity are just a few of the detrimental effects of the impact of global warming.
Inevitably, the conversation with governments, institutions, companies and consumers has dialed up in recent times on how to battle climate change. Some notable examples in Asia include China and India announcing their Net Zero Emission ambitions by 2060 and 2070 respectively; businesses setting strict targets to reduce their carbon dioxide and equivalent (CO2e) emission by a significant percentage by a specific timeline; and consumers have heightened their awareness of being more environmentally responsible in their everyday lives.
As we dive deeper into the topic, one thing is clear – reducing carbon footprint is one of the core pillars of how we can tackle this challenge. The transition of industries onto this sustainability journey is shown in the companies’ investments into low CO2e emission solutions, transparency in disclosing CO2e emission targets and reduction figures and education to the community to encourage lower carbon footprint products.
Over the past few decades, the architectural coatings industry has made significant strides in becoming more sustainable in our solutions. Some examples include waterborne paints, APEO-free, low VOC and VOC emissions and minimised biocide usage, to name just a few. Whilst the new features are providing families with a safer and healthier living environment, our products are still significantly reliant on fossil fuel resources to produce.
As the world prepares for this imminent change, the question is how the architectural coatings industry can also prepare itself for the low carbon economy transition.
“The purpose of our the low-carbon footprint portfolio launch is so that sustainable and CO2e reduction solutions can be widely available in the Asia Pacific region. We hope that by offering a portfolio of products, it can maximise the magnitude of CO2e reduction for our customers and industry."Chee Seng Yong, Head of Regional Marketing Decorative Coatings, Asia Pacific
Low-carbon footprint dispersion range for architectural coatings
One solution is BASF’s low-carbon footprint product range in the Asia Pacific for architectural coatings, which includes star products such as Acronal® MB 7676, Acronal® MB 7679, Acronal® MB 7073, and Acronal® MB 7074. The highlight of the low-carbon footprint portfolio is that the products deliver exceptional performance together with health and wellness benefits, while with a reduced carbon package associated with the overall product carbon footprint. This CO2e reduction of the low-carbon footprint portfolio depending on the product, can reduce up to almost 80% CO2e emission (Cradle-to-Gate) in the final dispersion.
Below are just some of the product features and carbon reduction highlights*:
|Acronal® MB 7676||Formaldehyde abatement functionality with low odor and low VOC properties||~55%|
|Acronal® MB 7679||Super Low Odour dispersion using BASF’s Advanced Odour Reduction (AOR) Technology||~67%|
|Acronal® MB 7073||Anti-microbial dispersion with efficacy against EV 71, H3N2, E.coli and staphylococcus, Human-Corona virus 229E||~79%|
|Acronal® MB 7074||Biobased dispersion with approximately 30% C14 traceable bio-carbon content||~69%|
*All carbon reduction percentages are based on comparison to 100% fossil-based dispersion verses a Biomass Balance Approach-based dispersions based on BASF’s SCOTT Tool (Strategic CO2 Transparency Tool) calculated in July 2022.
As one of the major components in the paint formulations, the reduced CO2e package of the low-carbon footprint products can greatly help minimise the overall carbon footprint of the paint without sacrificing the key performance attributes, such as scrub resistance, stain resistance, formaldehyde abatement, opacity and more.
So, how did we achieve the carbon reductions?
The chemical value chain – Biomass Balance Approach to reduce CO2e emission
The reality is when we look at dispersions, approximately 70% of the CO2e emission comes from the raw material itself. The reason is that the fossil feedstock that we use in the upstream production of the monomers comes from crude oil and natural gas, a carbon-intensive and finite resource (represented by the blue elements in Figure 1).
BASF has broken new ground with the development of the Biomass Balance process for the use of renewable raw materials in the chemical industry. This approach allows fossil fuels to be replaced by renewable raw materials at the start of chemical production (represented by the green elements in Figure 1). The carbon reduction via the bio-based feedstock amount is then attributed to specific products through a certified method.
Figure 1: BASF’s Biomass Balance Approach, the use of renewable raw materials in the chemical value chain.
BASF has established a closed chain of custody from the renewable feedstock it uses through to the final product. TÜV Nord, an independent certification body, supports the practical implementation and confirms according to the REDCert2certification scheme that BASF replaces the required quantities of fossil resources for the biomass balanced product with renewable feedstock. Some examples of certified bio-feedstock include bio-naphtha, bio-methane, and bio-ethanol, which is made from organic waste and other means.
The value of low carbon footprint products
The old saying goes, there is more than one way to cook an egg and that is how we should be approaching the subject of CO2e footprint solutions. Whilst the low-carbon footprint product portfolio serve as a foundation for carbon reduction in our raw materials, how businesses extract value holds the key to unlocking the potential of this opportunity.
“The purpose of our the low-carbon footprint portfolio launch is so that sustainable and CO2e reduction solutions can be widely available in the Asia Pacific region,” mentioned Chee Seng Yong, Head of Regional Marketing Decorative Coatings, Asia Pacific. “We hope that by offering a portfolio of products, it can maximise the magnitude of CO2e reduction for our customers and industry.”
Whether it is meeting your own organisation’s internal sustainability objectives, adhering to the newest regulations on green products, or driving your products’ differentiation in the marketplace, one thing is for sure: CO2e reduction efforts will continue to gain more traction as we embark on the vision of a low carbon footprint world.
Learn more about Biomass Balance Approach