Coatings industry wins major EU sustainability funding

A consortium of 15 partners from the coatings and joinery industries and research institutes has received EU funding of €2.7m towards a new coating standards project.

The funding will contribute to the development of Servowood, an FP7 project aiming to develop and establish European standards that will facilitate the prediction of service life for exterior wood coatings. The total budgeted cost of the project is €3.8m.

The consortium is made up of CEPE (the European Coatings Federation, representing the European paint manufacturers) and trade associations and consultancies from Denmark, Germany, Spain and the UK.

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These organisations will represent both paint manufacturers and the wood supply chain, together with research institutes and two SME coatings and joinery manufacturers.

Commenting on the achievement, Jan van der Meulen, director general of CEPE and Servowood’s project co-ordinator said: “It is fantastic news that the coatings industry, together with its partners from the woodworking industry, has secured this funding towards a project that will help shine the light on the contribution made by coatings towards protecting scarce natural resources, such as wood used as a substrate in the construction industry. Given that only one in twenty bids are successful, this is a real achievement”.

The project started on January 1 this year and will run for three years. Its aim is to expose a range of wood panels to natural weathering and a range of accelerated tests to determine which tests best predict natural degradation. It is hoped that from these results an improved European Standard can be developed for the timber construction industry as well as boost consumer confidence.