Double win for paint firm

The filling hall at AkzoNobel Ashington
The filling hall at AkzoNobel Ashington
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Ashington-based decorative paints and coatings giant, AkzoNobel, is paving the way for sustainable manufacturing with a double award win.

The firm has scooped two highly sought-after industry awards in recognition of its commitment to environmental processes.

On a national level, AkzoNobel Decorative Paints UK has been awarded the Best in Combined Reduction for Carbon, Water and Waste for 2017 by the Carbon Trust. This award recognises the best overall performer out of all the companies that hold the Carbon Trust Triple Standard.

On a local level, the AkzoNobel Ashington site specifically has won the British Coatings Federation (BCF) Sustainable Innovation Award for 2017. This prestigious award recognises, rewards and promotes outstanding innovations that have the greatest impact on the sustainability of the coatings industry and its associated supply chains.

“To have our hard work and dedication to sustainable manufacturing processes recognised on a national scale by the Carbon Trust and the British Coatings Federation is a huge honour,” said Jeff Hope, head of manufacturing unit at AkzoNobel Ashington.

“In line with our corporate social responsibility and sustainability policies, AkzoNobel is committed to pioneering new possibilities to do more with less on behalf of the decorating industry, reducing not only our own carbon footprint but also enabling our customers to reduce theirs too.”

Since 2009, AkzoNobel Decorative Paints in the UK has reduced the carbon footprint of its operations across the UK by 37 per cent, water usage by 24 per cent since 2010 and waste output by 42 per cent since 2011.

As part of AkzoNobel’s commitment to long-term value and positive social impact, the intention is to become carbon neutral and exclusively use 100 per cent renewable energy across all operations by 2050.

A major milestone in this journey was the opening of the company’s new site in Ashington.

Designed to be the world’s most technologically advanced and sustainable paint plant, the Ashington site, which has become the new UK home of AkzoNobel’s famous Dulux brand, utilises a variety of renewable energy sources such as photovoltaic cells and biomass boilers. Capable of producing up to 100 million litres of paint each year in up to 33,000 different colours, the site also features its own rain water harvesting units for use in the paint manufacturing process.

AkzoNobel estimates that the carbon footprint per litre of paint produced at Ashington will be reduced by 50 per cent compared with some of the older manufacturing facilities it is replacing.

Susan Kendall, Sustainability Director UK & Ireland at AkzoNobel, said: “Being recognised for the second time as best overall performer in the Carbon Trust Triple Standard is a source of great pride for us. However, we are even more proud of our new Ashington site which has embraced our sustainability values at its very core and will allow us to achieve a step-change in our environmental performance.

“We hate waste and are keen to eliminate it and reclaim leftover materials for positive use. We’ve already reduced our carbon footprint and water usage dramatically but are keen to go even further.

“We want to make it easy for our customers to do the same and are now seeking to reduce the environmental footprint of the whole decorating process, as well as continue to improve the resource efficiency of our entire business.”

AkzoNobel is the world’s leading decorative paints and coatings manufacturer, best known for its Dulux, Dulux Trade, Hammerite, Polycell and Cuprinol household brands.