Indonesian Paint Co. Sets CA-Based Green Code


Indonesian paint company PT Mowilex has recently published a guide that classifies its products in terms of Volatile Organic Compound emissions, according to a press release.

In an effort to build on its green legacy—having developed the first environmentally friendly water-based latex paints in 1970—the company’s guidelines will indicate when the terms “Zero VOC," “Ultra-Low VOC” and “Low VOC” will be used on the company’s products.  

“There is no national standards or requirements for VOC disclosures in Indonesia,” said Novina Tjahjadi, the company’s Director of Research and Development and Senior Scientist of PT Mowilex. “In fact, VOC disclosures are different in every country, and sometimes even within a country, states and regions may have their own rules.”

In developing its own “Green Label” certifications, PT Mowilex used limits mandated by the U.S. State of California’s South Coast Air Quality Management District—which went into effect January 2019—and limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

California’s strictest VOC limit for decorative and architectural coatings is 50 grams/liter, while most coatings and varnishes are permitted to have VOCs as high as 275 g/L. The U.S. EPA limits range from 250 to 800 g/L.

“By basing our limits for VOC labeling on California’s standards—which are among the strictest in the world—we wanted to bring a high degree of credibility and transparency to the process,” said Anna Wibowo, PT Mowilex’s Chief Marketing Officer.

In reviewing California’s and the EPA’s limits, PT Mowilex’s Ultra-Low VOC limit is specified at 40 g/L maximum—20% better than California’s strictest limit—while Low-VOC coatings are reported to have maximum emission levels 70% better than the U.S. EPA’s strictest limit as well.

However, many of PT Mowilex’s paints and coatings carry a “Zero VOC” label.

“It is not just about labeling,” Tjahjadi said. “We strive to be an ethical, contemporary market leader. We felt VOC disclosures required a certain level of integrity without which the consumer would lose trust and manufacturer claims could become inflated”. 

Going Green

In addition to the VOC-based product guide, the company has also announced its recent achievement of carbon neutrality, a reported first for any manufacturing company in Indonesia.

“Being an industry leader means more than delivering the highest quality paints and coatings to our customers. It also means taking responsibility for the carbon emissions resulting from our operations,” said Niko Safavi, CEO of PT Mowilex.

“We have a number of other initiatives and plans to minimize our impact on the environment and hope to inspire other firms that have not yet committed significant resources to address climate targets set by the Indonesian government.”

According to reports, PT Mowilex offset its carbon footprint following The CarbonNeutral Protocol developed by Natural Capital Partners and was evaluated by third-party certification body SCS Global Services.

PT Mowilex is reported to have successfully offset emissions stemming from its business operations in 11 facilities, including its factory, which employs 1,000 people across Indonesia.


Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Certifications and standards; Coatings; Container labels; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Environmental Control; Environmental Controls; Environmental Controls; Environmental Protection; Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Environmentally friendly; EPA; Green coatings; Latin America; Low-VOC; North America; VOC content; VOC emissions; Z-Continents; Zero-VOC

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