In a world that is so concerned with its waste bio-products, car companies have been striving to reduce their carbon footprint. Companies have been working hard towards the goal of making their entire manufacturing process and cars to be as green and eco-friendly as possible. With so many mega automakers out there, the competition to create sustainable cars (as prototypes or mass-market vehicles) has never been greater. Trying to make its dent in this area is the Bavarian auto major BMW. The BMW Group has been working on several green projects over the past several years with remarkable success.
Of course, one of the most important and resource-consuming things behind the making of a modern motor vehicle is paint. In general, paints used on cars usually contain a lot of chemicals and dyes, neither of which are known to be particularly eco-friendly and are quite harmful as well. The emissions that come off of the production of such paints and their application on vehicles is not sustainable for any party involved. However, in a first, the BMW Group has decided to move from regular synthetic paints (which usually uses crude oil in its production) to matt paints that are made from eco-friendly biomass.
Improving upon this already-green move is yet another initiative made by BMW Group Plants, wherein its Leipzig and Rosslyn (South Africa) facilities have started using sustainably-manufactured solutions for corrosion protection. Moreover, the primary materials required to make the paints are being made from bio-waste, which are usually sourced from sewage treatment plants. As you can tell already, the BMW Group is doing its best to propagate sustainability in the automotive world – something that should always be appreciated. Due to its work towards sustainability, the company’s efforts have been noticed by the industry as a whole. In fact, according to an official report, the BMW Group will save over 15,000 tons in its overall Co2 emissions between now and 2030.
According to Joachim Post, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Purchasing and Supplier Network, “By reducing our use of fossil raw materials, we can conserve natural resources and lower CO2 emissions at the same time. To achieve this, we are increasingly relying on sustainability innovations in our supplier network. Innovative paints based on renewable raw materials are an important step in this direction.”
Right from the very start of the paint-making process, it is down to BASF’s new production technique which has allowed the BMW Group to be able to switch from the earlier fossil fuel-based naphtha to the newly-created bio-waste based paints. Courtesy of these progressive techniques, the company will mitigate Co2 emissions by not only avoiding the usage of generic fossil fuel, which is (co-incidentally) extensively used in production, transport and processing of crude oil. As per BASF’s statements, the newly-developed paints and coatings manufactured from bio-waste are chemically indistinguishable from those that are made using older synthetic materials. Furthermore, BASF rolls out the two different paint types on the same production line.
According to a recent study by BASF, the BMW Group has purchased the exact amount of bio-naphtha and bio-methane that will be required for the automaker to go completely fossil fuel-free. Due to its new and sustainable manufacturing technique, the overall Co2 emissions from paint manufacturing has gone down by more than 40 percent. Given the fact that the two BMW Group facilities in Leipzig and Rosslyn churn out around 250,000 vehicles per year, that’s a pretty neat statistic.