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British Coatings Federation (BCF) members have joined other sectors in pledging to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The commitment was made at the recent BCF Board of Directors meeting in Manchester and will be backed up by more detailed Net Zero Roadmaps for each BCF sector.
The industry has also committed to a highly ambitious target for its paint recycling scheme, PaintCare. This scheme, which aims to create a circular economy for leftover decorative paint in the UK will aim to increase the percentage leftover paint re-used, recycled, or re-manufactured from 2% today to 75% by 2030.
"With the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (or COP26 for short) fast approaching, there has rightly been an increased focus on sustainable action, but our sector has been continuously working on improving key sustainability metrics for over 25 years,” said Tom Bowtell, CEO at the British Coatings Federation. "I’m delighted the BCF Board has set ambitious targets for both Net Zero and leftover paint recycling, and we will be working hard with our members in the next 12 months to ensure a clear roadmap to achieve both objectives is in place”.
Sustainable production and recycling have been a key focus for the coatings industry in the UK since 1996 and are the basis for some of the 45 health, safety and environment key performance indicators monitored through the BCF’s Coatings Care programme. Latest Coatings Care figures showed record low levels of energy used in production as well as a significant decrease in production waste. 71% of production waste is now recycled, compared with just 17% in 1996. Accident rates are also at a record low and well below the latest UK Labour Force survey, with zero RIDDOR reported dangerous occurrences or fires at BCF member sites in 2020.
"Alongside COP26, we want to highlight and celebrate the work our members are doing to create a more sustainable industry. We have launched our #SustainableCoatings and #SustainableInks campaign, which will share case studies from our members showcasing what they have already done and what new initiatives they will be taking in future to increase sustainability. These will be shared on social media using the #SustainableCoatings and #SustainableInks hashtags on any related social media posts” concluded Bowtell.