ENVIRONMENTALISM AND PAINT
From his experience of working in the paint industry, Dr Herman Fischer (AURO's founder), became convinced that only by using naturally occurring materials, exclusively, could we avoid risks of toxic contamination from the products of synthetic chemistry.
These risks are not confined to health and environmental hazards at the point of use but include by-products, waste products and escape of toxins during production.
Attempts to overcome these risks by substituting new synthetic materials for known harmful ones have largely been self defeating.
each step is taken to replace a known harmful ingredient, new chemicals
are required to compensate for the loss of the functions of those being
replaced. This process outpaces any possible testing for harm from
these new chemicals.
The promotion of 'water-bourne' gloss paints as a means of reducing VOCs is an interesting example.
In order to produce water-bourne gloss paints, the acrylic resins on which many are based, not only involved an energy intensive production process, but required a complex of neutralising agents, auxiliary dilutants and preservatives to achieve the desired result. Some of these chemicals are highly dangerous and although only traces of them remain in the finished product, Swedish nature conservation authorities have warned that, a 40 million to one dilution is necessary to render 'water soluble gloss paint' harmless before entering the sewage system - the equivalent of rinsing a paint brush under a tap for a week!
Despite this, and because of the potential environmental and practical advantages of water thinnable gloss paints, AURO's
paint chemist were given the challenge of coming up with a paint that,
whilst being water miscible, used natural materials and natural methods.
It took three years and millions of Euros to achieve: but by 1999, the impossible became possible.
AURO's uncompromising stance does make their products somewhat more costly but, for those prepared to stand on the principles, this is a worth while price to pay.
Note: To be sure of the environmental credentials of a paint ask for a full declaration of the composition and origins of the ingredients. A declaration that AURO is always happy to supply.