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Title: Paint factory’s green initiative
Date: 06-Mar-2012
Category: Initiative towards greener environment
Source/Author:         VIJENTHI NAIR
Description: Private companies journey towards sustainability and better environmnet.

TODAY, almost everything revolves around being green and environmentally friendly but some things just cannot be brushed aside due to its harmful factors such as paint.

Decorative paint is all around us, it makes an area look nice and plays an important role in creating a conducive environment. However, the chemicals used to produce paint have an unsavoury impact on the quality of water, air and earth.

The air quality depreciates as raw materials such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and pigment dust are released into the environment.

The improper disposal of certain solid wastes can result in pollution of ground and surface water and air while the waterways may be contaminated with solvents and heavy metals.

Sustainable plan: The ZeroWaste plant helps to reduce solid and liquid waste disposal.

ICI Paints Malaysia has set a milestone in reducing wastes with the launch of ZeroWaste to incorporate no solid and liquid waste disposal and particular to AkzoNobel Decorative Paints’ businesses in South-East Asia and Pacific.

Its supply chain director Au Seng Thoy said being aware of the harm the coating industry caused to the environment, the project was one of their many efforts which focused on recycling waste water.

“A lot of water is used to wash the tanks on a daily basis. Previously, the waste water was sold to private companies, resulting in water wastage and higher cost.

“Hence, we have designed this plant to treat the waste water, and reuse it for other operations,” he said.

Au said although a lot of money had been put into building the plant, it was a cost-effective measure in the long run because there would be no water disposal.

“We aim to reduce the amount of waste production for external disposal, which will go a long way towards our sustainability journey.

“We believe that the core value of sustainability has become compelling in the business world due to greater long-term profitability. Reducing disposal of water can also reduce costs in the long run,” he said.

Au said the waste water contained solids and liquids, which would be separated and treated.

“Treated solids and liquids are then channelled back to the plant for various usages, without the need of costly disposal.

“On energy conservation, we have designed our roofing so it allows natural light in. The light bulbs we used are energy-saving bulbs which we only turn on at night. More green initiatives will be implemented in time to come,” he said.

ICI Paints has been acquired by Dutch-based company AkzoNobel in 2008, the largest global paints and coatings company and a major producer of speciality chemicals.

Currently, 48% of production sites has sustainable fresh water management and aims to hit 100% in 2015.

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