Sustainability
Published: April 21, 2017
Sustainability
Published: April 21, 2017

Sustainability at PPG

Environmental and sustainability issues are at the core of our values at PPG and we make a concerted effort to track, scrutinise and celebrate our efforts.

As we honour Earth Day, we're excited to share with you some of the major changes we've made and wins we've had across EMEA in the past year.

Multi-year effort reduces energy usage by 20% in Denmark

A team effort to reduce energy use at our architectural coatings facility in Søborg, Denmark, has helped the site save more than 2.5 million kilowatt hours since 2012, that's a massive 20 percent reduction!

Switching to biomass was the real game changer here. The site's heating system was shifted from the use of natural gas to one that uses heated water from a biomass-heated power plant.

The plant is now truly a smart factory of the future as a computerised environmental monitoring system has been added to the factory track and manage energy consumption. Additional efforts included an overhaul of the ventilation system, added insulation, new LED lighting and double-plated glass throughout the building.

Transforming PVC scrap into doormats in France

Do you use PVC products? Well you may just see them again as recycled waste in France is getting underfoot!

At our automotive OEM coatings facility in Saint-Just-en-Chaussée, PPG colleagues are taking PVC scrap materials, that were previously disposed of through incineration, and converting them into raw materials that a local company uses to manufacture doormats.

The project will recycle approximately 51 metric tons of waste and save in annual disposal costs.

German locations earn ISO 50001 certification

Eight of our locations in Germany have been certified to ISO 50001 for their energy management systems. Three of the sites achieved the certification in 2014, with the remaining securing it in 2016.

To earn the certification, each site had to develop a policy for more efficient use of energy, fix targets and objectives to meet the policy, use data to better understand and make decisions about energy use, measure the results, review how well the policy works and continually improve energy management.

Robotics enhance efficiency at Milan facility in Italy

Industrial automation is a big term in the future of how we work and PPG is at the cutting edge of technologies that make the work we do more efficient. Each year, employees at our automotive refinish plant in Milan, Italy, manually opened and emptied sacks of powder into processing tanks. The operation provided challenges in containing particulates from the powder.

The plant recently installed an automated system that uses a robot to handle, open and empty the powder sacks into a special hopper. The powder is then transported to the processing area through a piping system.

In addition to minimising particulates and ergonomic risks associated with manual handling, the system also saves in annual production costs.

Felizzano plant, Italy, reduces energy intensity by 3%

At our industrial coatings facility in Felizzano the installation of new equipment and implementation of process changes has led to a 3 percent reduction in energy intensity.

The facility installed a more energy-efficient water chiller and transfer pump, increased preventive maintenance to boost performance and reduce energy consumption on various production equipment and reduced rework in the finished goods area.

Energy reductions heat up savings in Spain

Our automotive OEM coatings facility in Valencia, Spain is currently saving 362,000 kilowatt hours per year with an innovative idea.

The heat produced from the factory's air compressor is being recycled and used to heat and store deionized water. The project is the first in a long-term initiative to capture and reuse heat produced at various points in the manufacturing process.

Process changes deliver 11% reduction in waste in Poland

A diverse range of products are in production at our industrial coatings facility in Cieszyn, Poland and the amount of waste generated at the plant is in direct correlation to range.

To save on waste, an innovative new process has been implemented. The increase in size of production batches, identifying a proper sequence for colours and dedicated production lines for specific products to minimise cleaning, all led to the plant’s waste intensity declining by 11%. 

Getting healthy through teamwork in Russia

More than 70 employees from our sites in Moscow and Kolomna, Russia, celebrated 2016 PPG Global Wellness Day with morning exercises, healthy snacks and meals and a timed competition that required teammates to work together to achieve their goals.

As part of the competition, employees were grouped into six teams that each participated in rock climbing, archery and paintball games. These activities gave employees the opportunity to stretch their physical capabilities and strengthen their relationships with colleagues through problem-solving, teamwork and collaboration.