Sustainability and a positive contribution to society are important aspects through our products' whole lifetime. Smart solutions, sustainable innovation and efficient indicators are our driving force. Therefore we always incorporate our partners along the value chain.
Based on our materiality assessment, we developed three different streams in which we categorized ➜ our material topics. In the stream Products with Impact, it’s all about scaling up our ➜ sustainable product portfolio and striving for ➜ breakthrough innovations.
“Already today, we are able to offer pioneering solutions such as the ultraviolet and electron-beam curing paints to our customers. This technology is a real game changer in decarbonizing the coil coating industry.”
Our overall goal is to provide coatings that deliver positive impact at every touchpoint. When we incorporate sustainable practices and materials into our products and processes, we create a win-win-win scenario for society and the planet, our customers as well as Beckers. We constantly work on new types of paint formulations to take a more end-to-end approach, looking across the full value chain in seeking more sustainable solutions. With the technologies we develop for our coatings we want to inspire the wider industry to become sustainable.
By 2030, we aim to have ➜ 50 percent sales of net-sustainable products and zero products that have issues with sustainability. We want to push products that both meet our customers’ needs and fulfill our shared vision of sustainability.
As a company that makes coatings from potentially toxic chemicals, sometimes scarce minerals, using fossil-based raw materials, we are aware of the potential and actual negative impacts on people and planet. Providing a sustainable product portfolio means for us that the products themselves, their production, the processing through our customers and generally the performance during their whole lifespan is as sustainable as possible.
We have a long tradition of finding more sustainable solutions for our customers. We promote the use of renewable raw materials, develop coatings with a reduced climate impact, avoid minerals that are scarce or endangered and we sell coatings that provide proven functional sustainability benefits for customers and society while in use. In 2022, we worked on our commitments and made headway in several key areas.
Beckers is developing ➜ UV/EB curing as an alternative technology for the coil coating process – enabling both reduced consumption of paint and significantly lower energy consumption in the coil coating process itself. We believe strongly that this multi-faceted end-to-end approach will yield the biggest gains in sustainability. Building on 18 years of pioneering work with UV/EB paints, Beckers was the first coating company to market the product in 2023.
With the ➜ Beckers Sustainability Index (BSI) we developed a revolutionary tool for transparent product classification. With it we measure the sustainability of our entire product portfolio as well as track and evaluate the effectiveness of our actions. The BSI classifies a coating according to its sustainable impact, taking both ➜ material and functional dimensions into account. The tool provides a holistic perspective and is used by Beckers to easily demonstrate to customers what a sustainable coating is and how the products they buy from us are categorized. All products in the lowest category will be phased out.
To verify our unique scientific approach and proof that the tool is objective, robust, aligned with industry standards, and reliable in all aspects that matter, we asked Ernst & Young to verify the BSI. The assessment is currently still ongoing and will be finalized in 2023.
For more information and details about the BSI click here.
Many challenges must be overcome throughout the entire value chain to decarbonize the steel and aluminum industries. We support our customers by decarbonizing coil coatings and by regularly quantifying the environmental impact and especially the carbon footprint of the products we sell today. Our customers’ products in steel and aluminum are essential engineering and construction materials in modern society, but these industries are currently among the largest emitters of carbon dioxide. At Beckers, we have developed an in-house
➜ Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) tool to enable us to produce more accurate LCAs for our coil coating products. To provide an even more accurate picture more efficiently to our customers, we upgraded our LCA capabilities in 2022. We are working to integrate a downstream carbon footprint into our LCA models (coil coating processes).
An important issue is the release of produced and applied ➜ volatile organic compounds (VOC). VOCs can escape into the atmosphere when paint is applied. Together with our stakeholders, we aim to lower VOC emissions wherever possible. For example, we offer high-performance waterborne and high-solid coatings to provide our customers sustainable solutions with low-VOC content and so mitigate negative environmental and health impacts. Our recently marketed UV/EB coatings for example are solvent-free and thus significantly reduce the VOC emissions.
Additionally, the total costs for a coating solution and, in the end, the object it is applied to, decrease when we take the holistic approach of life-cycle assessments.
The ➜ total cost of ownership (TCO) takes into account additional costs spread throughout a product’s entire life cycle. By reducing the costs of maintenance and operation, the value of a sustainable coating extends beyond its tangible value. Our highest durability system, ➜ RUV5, can significantly lengthen the lifetime of a building envelope with minimal maintenance, while our self-cleaning coatings reduce people’s exposure to chemicals required to clean surfaces. Our ➜ Beckry®Therm coatings can significantly reduce energy consumption in cooling or heating a building.
Another aspect of our role involves training and education of our people on their responsibilities, aimed at building sustainability competence and achieving a shift in mindset. The training of our sales force was and continues to be a major cornerstone of working towards our goal of 50 percent net-sustainable sales. Furthermore, all countries are developing detailed plans to quantify and track sustainability improvements with customers to help them reach 50 percent sales of sustainable products in their market.
We believe that most challenges are better solved together. We are in continual exchange with our customers to analyze and assess the effectiveness of new, more sustainable products and product features. Our LCA capabilities and our progress with the BSI enable us today to work increasingly with customers’ R&D teams to drive product innovation, identifying routes where together we will reduce the carbon footprint of coil coated steel.
Our strongest commitment is in ➜ our 2030 Sustainability Strategy and goals that we have long communicated.
Different policies and frameworks underline our commitments, such as Sustainability Policy, ➜ our Group Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) Policy and essential frameworks such as ➜ our Code of Conduct and ➜ our Supplier Code of Conduct.
Due to our sustainable product portfolio, we contribute to the achievement of the
➜ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) decent work and economic growth (SDG 8), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11), responsible consumption and production (SDG 12) as well as climate action (SDG 13).
For further information on the SDGs click here.