Environment industries archive
Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.
Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.
A Performance Based Contract between PPG Painting and Ford Australia has led to a reduction in VOC emission by 27% and water consumption by 32% within the painting operations. Simultaneously, paint quality has been improved leading to a reduction in the number of car bodies requiring re-painting.
The Ford Broadmeadows Assembly Plant assembles the Falcon family of vehicles. Major components for the vehicle, including the engine and body panels are brought across from the Ford Geelong manufacturing operations. Other components, including seats, windows and lights are purchased from specialized suppliers.
PPG purchased the industrial paint division from Dulux Paint in 1998; at this time Dulux employed a number of staff directly at Ford Australia Plant in Broadmeadows. In late 1999, PPG and the Ford Motor Company entered into a Performance Based Contract (PBC) where PPG would be paid on a "per car body" rate for the supply of paint to the Broadmeadows plant. This agreement only covered new cars, and did not extend to the painting of parts etc. All paints are locally manufactured by PPG Industries Australia at Clayton, VIC, Australia. PPG is a member of the Responsible Care Program of the Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association (PACIA). All paints are water-based, except for white and yellow topcoats and clear lacquer applied as finishing coat to metallic paints to act as a paint protector. All primers are solvent based at present.
Currently PPG have six employees located at the Ford plant. These staff are involved as chemical and process engineers overseeing and monitoring the painting operation, but are not currently directly involved with the activity of paint application.
PBC is a useful eco-efficiency tool that is particularly helpful in implementing Cleaner Production initiatives where the availability of capital or expertise may otherwise be limiting factors. Under PBC, a third party adopts the risk for managing a discrete part of an organisation's operations and gains financial rewards for increasing the efficiency of this aspect of the business. Depending on the terms of the agreement the savings made by the organisation are used to pay the consultant and to purchase equipment or upgrade services. Ongoing savings eventually fully benefit the principal organisation. PBC can be used for organisations' inputs and outputs and has been successfully used in areas such as transport, energy, waste and chemical use. More information about performance based contracts.
Doors, bonnet and deck lid are added to cars moving along the assembly lines. The bodies are then conveyed to the Pre-treatment and Prime Facility for painting. Painting of new car bodies is carried out in four-stages
The painting process accounts for just under 50% of the total amount of electricity consumed on the site (13% of combined gas and electricity in MJ/vehicle), 44 % of water consumption and 10 % of solid waste generation at the Broadmeadows's site.
PPG monitor inputs and outputs, material specification with the phosphate and electronic paint baths, and the overall quality of the painting operation at Ford Australia.
The two paint-dipping (bath) systems require constant monitoring to ensure quality of output and the specification of the paint provides the most efficient production. Baths are tested for inputs, viscosity, Ph and solids.
This involves the development of new paints and improving the quality of excisting products. This is both to meet new customer requirements and improve the excisting range of paints with regard to product durability and finish, and also to achieve better business and environmental outcomes.
A lead-free electrocoating system was introduced progressively during 2002, improving the quality of the trade waste stream.
Upgraded the phosphating process with an auto sludge discharge process which improves the efficiency of the nickel removing process and consequently reduces nickel in the trade waste stream.
Ford's Trade Waste Treatment Plant
The programming of robots (bell) is constantly monitored to identify opportunities to improve the eco-efficiency of the painting operations.
PPG are continually investigating the use of more advanced spray gun technology to again improve the eco-efficiency of the painting operations.
Staff training is constantly provided to improve the efficiency of paint application and to minimise waste generation and water consumption while maintaining product quality is a continuing challenge conducted in collaboration between PPG and Ford Australia.
The most effective method of reducing VOC emissions is utilising cleaner production techniques to reduce raw material inputs that release these volatile air emissions in use. This not only generates less waste, but also makes sound financial sense.
The new application technology to reduce VOC emissions include:
Both organisations have shown strong commitment to the principles of eco-efficiency and Sustainable Development. The PBC has led to a closer working relationship in which both organisations have improved their business and environmental efficiency.
Increase in size of automobiles makes it difficult to reduce resource use per car body. Split management can cause delays in the upgrading of technology.
PPG and Ford Australia are investigating a number of Cleaner Production initiatives to further increase the eco-efficiency of their painting operations:
Site Environmental Engineer
Broadmeadows Assembly Plant
Case developed by the Centre of Excellence in Cleaner Production (Curtin University of Technology)
Last modified: June 2003