PC and the Environmental Advantages of MicroPro®
We continually evaluate ways to develop products and practices that improve our performance as a corporate citizen and as a business – the very definition of social responsibility. MicroPro®, Koppers PC’s flagship wood treatment product, represents a revolutionary way to pressure-treat wood for decks, fences, landscaping, and general construction using micronized copper preservatives in a uniquely environmentally preferable manner.
The process of creating MicroPro® is more environmentally friendly when compared to producing traditional soluble copper-based wood preservatives. The MicroPro® process, which includes the use of recycled copper as the primary raw material, reduces total energy use by approximately 80%, and reduces the release of greenhouse gases by an estimated 20,000 tons or more a year. These figures have been validated by SCS Global Services, which awarded MicroPro® its Environmentally Preferable Product (EPP) designation, the first treated wood process to be so recognized. In January 2017, MicroPro® also received approval of industry standardization by the American Wood Protection Association.
PC is working on securing additional MicroPro® certifications in Australia and New Zealand. Other environmental advantages of this breakthrough technology include:
- MicroPro® is the first treated wood process certified under Scientific Certification Systems Environmentally Preferable Product (EPP) program based on Life-Cycle Assessment.
- MicroPro® has earned certification from National Green Building Standards and UL GREENGUARD Gold, two respected organizations serving the construction industry.
The company has made a sizeable investment in a PC facility where the use of scrap and recycled copper in the wood treatment production process can safely be increased, helping to enhance energy efficiency. All three PC facilities in North America also pursue a standard of operations calling for zero effluent material sent into sanitary sewers, reuse of wastewater, and comprehensive recycling of paper, metal, and plastic. These facilities adhere to number of permits and regulations issued by their respective states and local municipalities.
PC also has invested in equipment and processes to substantially reduce the amount of ammonia emissions that occur while processing copper to create wood treatment chemicals at facilities in Tennessee and South Carolina over next two years. Achieving this goal will require a slightly higher expenditure for Koppers, but will reduce the impact on local communities – an example of Zero Harm principles put into practice.
Genesis of MicroPro® Demonstrates Practical Sustainability
MicroPro® Treated Timber Creates Unique Boardwalk in Ireland