The Journal of Architectural Coatings released on their web site on March 8, 2013, an article referring to settlement orders by the Federal Trade Commission with Sherwin-Williams and PPG Architectural Finishes, Inc for “misleading consumers to believe that some of their paints were free of volatile organic compounds (VOC’s).”
Click Final Order for ‘Zero VOC’ Claim Cases to read the original article.
It perplexes me that there has to be false information to beguile consumers that their paint products are clean when in fact they are not. What is the problem with being honest about what your product actually contains? I don’t believe that Sherwin-Williams or PPG would suffer economically by selling paints with full VOC disclosure.
We at ROMA are accustomed to providing “FULL DISCLOSURE”. Perhaps it is because we have formulated our products according to a European standard, which requires the disclosure of any type of VOC content. The reality, in scientific terms, is that there are very few products made by nature or people that have “0” VOC content and the EU does not provide for any declaration of “0”/”zero” VOC content. Peeling an orange releases an amount of VOC, albeit short lived, into the atmosphere.
ROMA believes that focusing on VOC content alone would be a “low bar” standard when the scientific reality of dangerous chemicals in paint should not be limited to just VOCs, but to a whole host of chemicals that are as, if not more, dangerous. VOC compounds are not the only offenders in paint. Our idea was to identify all chemicals that should not be included in any paint or plaster that would be applied or installed in environments that would hurt or damage people or the environment. We would remove these chemicals to the extent possible, or not manufacture or sell the product at all. This is an organic approach in thinking (i.e. circular), not a linear approach.
The National Institute of Health released an Asthma Report on August 3rd 2012, “Healthy Environments, A Compilation of Substances Linked to Asthma”, that identified 75 chemicals known to cause or aggravate asthma in acrylic paints including those labeled “Low” or “0” VOC. We at ROMA used that list to confirm and identify that any paint or plaster product we manufacture did not have any of those chemicals listed. We were able to identify only 1 paint product out of a list of almost 50 products we manufacture that contained 1 chemical that was listed in the Asthma Report, and we have removed that chemical.
PEG (Polyethylene Glycol), PG (Propylene Glycol), and APEOs (Alkylphenol Ethoxylates), are insidious chemicals and are the principle ingredients contributing to Sick Building Syndrome (SBS). PEG and PG chemicals off-gas for up to 70 years before they disappear and APEOs are a water contaminant that is deadly for fish and fauna and are carcinogenic to humans and animals. I will not go into all of the obvious hazards of how these chemicals react in our bodies and environment, but my principal argument is that these products are not listed in paint chemical disclosures.
Paint companies in general are concerned about their bottom line earnings, and we at ROMA are too, but not to the extent to poison our children, work environments, planet, or ourselves. Nature has provided for us for thousands of years, using our intelligence, solutions to help us improve our lives, and to do so without being in opposition to her. This is why we have endeavored, after spending years in research studying ancient paint technologies, that we could reverse the need to substitute natural products with chemicals, having been convinced that natural products are lesser in performance than chemical products. We now offer historical potassium silicate paints and plasters, that out-perform acrylics, are aesthetically beautiful, and cost less than equivalent Low or “0”/”zero” VOC acrylic paints.
Our purpose is to inform our clients and patrons of what potentially dangerous chemicals are in paint and plaster products, and to provide “FULL DISCLOSURE” of any dangerous and unhealthy chemical content. We do not claim that any of our paint or plaster products are “0” VOC, because they are not. Our tint manufacturer does declare that their tint products are “0” VOC and “0” APEO, but they have achieved that capability because it was scientifically possible only as relates to color tint. Using our natural resources is the best alternative to creating healthy environments and we encourage everyone to consider the alternative solutions, and their god given right, to have clean products available to use and create their own prosperity.