At PPG, we are committed to using resources efficiently and driving sustainability throughout our entire value chain to preserve and protect the environment in which we operate. Our focused product portfolio of paints, coatings and specialty materials enables a concerted and disciplined approach to developing sustainable products and processes that provide environmental and other sustainability benefits to our customers.
Minimizing the footprint of our operations is an ongoing focus, and our locations are guided by our 2025 sustainability goals, outlined at sustainability.ppg.com. Sustainability roadmaps require each location to identify, quantify and track projects that will enable them to meet each environmental goal by the 2025 deadline.
One example of our commitment to environmental sustainability comes from PPG’s San Juan del Rio, Mexico facility, which now uses 100% clean energy supplied via a photovoltaic park. The park’s solar panels capture sunlight and transform it into thousands of watts of electricity per second without producing harmful emissions. This project has resulted in a 30% energy savings, 100% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from electricity generation and a clean-energy certificate from the Mexican government as part of an effort to help the country meet its decarbonization objectives.
Furthermore, PPG is working alongside an energy company to develop a combined heat and power plant that will support its automotive and industrial coatings manufacturing facility in Caivano, Italy. Through the partnership, the cogeneration plant will burn natural gas to produce electricity, then recapture the heat that is often lost in conventional power generation facilities. That heat will be transmitted to the PPG plant through a system that connects the two facilities. The plant is expected to begin operations in 2021.
In addition to fostering sustainable operations, PPG is committed to driving these practices throughout the product lifecycle. Our Product Stewardship Management System is the bedrock of our process. To ensure sustainable business practices, the management system covers the full scope of the product life cycle – from material sourcing to product development and application. PPG ensures hazard communication and chemical regulatory compliance, transport of dangerous goods assurance, and customer response to end-of-life requirements.
Last year, PPG launched a number of sustainable offerings for our customers in our efforts to achieve our 2025 goal of 40% of sales from sustainably advantaged products. Examples of product launches in 2020 include:
- PPG ENVIROCRON HTE Max extreme corrosion polyester powder topcoat that protects large truck wheels and agricultural, heavy-duty and industrial equipment. The product offers up to three times the corrosion resistance of traditional single-coat powders without the higher labor costs and longer process times associated with primer/topcoat systems.
- Low-VOC waterborne coating system for the China refinish market that provides for extremely low volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions.
- PPG ENVIROCRON HeatSense powder coating for heat-sensitive wood, composite applications that can cure in as few as five minutes at 250 degrees Fahrenheit in a convection or infrared oven and is fully reclaimable, allowing cost-effective and efficient production.
- PPG AQUACOVER waterborne coating system for shipping containers, an odorless, non-toxic, waterborne solution that enables a 65% reduction in volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions.
PPG also focused on supporting our automotive customers as they transition their offerings from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles. Our coating products will enable the conversion, resulting in a significant reduction in automotive emissions.
In 2020, our employees continued to enhance our sustainable operations around the globe. During the year, we recognized 52 projects through our internal environmental sustainability awards initiative. These projects, which we estimate saved more than $12 million, helped us to reduce our energy consumption, waste and emissions.
We continue to encourage our suppliers to partner with us in achieving our sustainability goals and to innovate and develop new products requiring less intensive material and energy consumption. To support this, in 2020, PPG engaged EcoVadis™, a leading global corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings company, to leverage assessment processes, tools, resources and insights to drive sustainability standards and practices throughout PPG's global supply base. The EcoVadis sustainability intelligence suite will assist PPG in providing broad-scale supply chain risk screening and mapping, more reliable supplier sustainability metric scorecards with actionable ratings, and complete audit and improvement management capabilities. This evaluation will ensure PPG suppliers around the world are equally as committed to sustainability.
To learn more about our sustainability efforts, visit sustainability.ppg.com.
In 2020, PPG achieved:
- A FORTUNE® World’s Most Admired Company in our industry
- EcoVadis Gold Rating for Corporate Social Responsibility
- Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s CORPORATE EQUALITY INDEX®
- Newsweek list of America’s Most Responsible Companies
- Named as a constituent of the FTSE4Good® Index Series
- JUST Capital – PPG led in stakeholder value creation among the chemical industry
- 3BL’s Best Corporate Citizens
- AA rating by MSCI for environmental, social and governance practices