ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) factors have long been an important part of the business agenda for global aircraft painting and exterior coatings specialist, MAAS Aviation. “Environmental responsibility is taken extremely seriously throughout the organisation” comments Richard Marston, Chief Commercial Officer.
“Across our global sites, we have implemented a number of processes and technologies designed to reduce waste and protect our local surroundings, whilst maximising the quality and longevity of the work we deliver.”
Marston explains that MAAS has a dedicated Environmental Manager to oversee all elements of their sustainability programme, which include a number of recycling initiatives that not only reclaim and reuse materials but, in some instances, also save money in the long run.
“All our facilities are designed to manage waste from our processes responsibly, with materials recycled wherever possible.
“The latest example of this is a new water treatment plant that is being installed at our Kaunas facility, the project is well underway and should be completed before the end of the year.
“When up and running, the system will process chemical waste from our daily operations and separate the water from the contaminants, which are then turned into dry waste to enable cleaner and easier disposal.”
All MAAS facilities are ISO 14001 Environmental Management certified and boast underground sump systems built below the hangar floor to ensure no waste chemicals or contaminated water ends up on the apron or local area. Marston continues,
“We have also developed our own unique recycling technology which allows us to recover 80% of the solvents we use.
“These are then redeployed for cleaning equipment such as paint guns, lines and pipes.
“The vast amounts of dry materials we use throughout the painting process – paper, plastic sheeting, tape etc. – are also fully recycled.”
Other initiatives include the MAAS Alabama, USA business unit taking action against climate change by implementing an offsetting programme.
Geoffrey Myrick, Chief Operating Officer – USA, comments “Earlier this year we set out to quantify our emissions from electricity, water, and natural gas.
“Then in September, we offset these emissions year-to-date by investing in a Climate+ Portfolio through Gold Standard.
“This is a meaningful first step and a programme we look forward to continuing.”
As well as their internal processes, MAAS also works closely with the major aircraft paint manufacturers to ensure they are using the latest technology coatings and techniques.
Marston explains the environmental benefits of this, “The high-performance aerospace coatings we use not only look superb but also reduce aircraft weight to improve fuel efficiency, thereby lowering emissions.
“Our aim is to foster the best combination of performance and sustainability across our multi-site operation.
“We are also seeing that by using the latest technology, chrome-free primers, basecoats and topcoats, such as Socogel and Bogel, we are able to extend the longevity of the paint finish we deliver.
“Our work has a minimum four-year warranty, but we are working with some of our customers to see how far we can extend the life of their coatings and the results so far are impressive.
“Using these products, which deliver highly improved adhesion, coupled with our OEM standard painting techniques and processes, we are seeing finishes that are still looking great and performing well seven and even eight years after being painted.
“It goes without saying that extending the period between livery re-paints makes good economic and environmental sense.
“We are constantly seeking new ways to be sustainable and minimise our impact on the world around us, and believe that every step forward is a move in the right direction.
“All areas of the business are being examined to see where improvements can be made, an example is a recent change in company policy so all new company cars must now be 100% electric.
“Whilst there is of course still plenty more work to be done, our eyes are always looking to the future” concludes Marston.