Manila -- The Philippine Ozone Desk (POD) recently demonstrated the use of supercritical carbon dioxide (SCCO2) in making spray polyurethane foam. This non-ozone depleting blowing agent was used 7 May in applying spray foam to the roof of EMB-EIA Building of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
This demonstration was made possible through a grant from the Multilateral Fund (MLF) and the government of Japan, with the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) as implementing agency.
Spraying of roofs with PU foam is widely practiced in industrial and commercial buildings and lately, in residential buildings in the country, said a release from DENR. The application of insulating foam in roofs helps reduce power consumption as well as giving other benefits such as protection of roofing materials and elimination of leaks.
According to DENR Secretary Ramon Paje, the Philippines foam-manufacturing sector has shown fast growth, due to the construction of malls, warehouses, industrial facilities, commercial buildings, and other similar facilities in the country.
"For the past ten years or so, spray polyurethane foam has been applied using harmful chemicals such HCFC-141b that deplete the ozone layer. Now, we are finding better alternatives that the sector can use without destroying the environment," Paje commented, in the DNER release.
Achilles, the Japanese company that developed the SCCO2 technology, has provided ten drums of chemicals for demonstration purposes, with demonstration facilities available in a facility in Pasay City, said POD -- which is a unit of
the Environmental Management Bureau of the DNER).
In January 2011, the Philippines secured Montreal Protocol approval and $2.26 million funding to help implement its Foam Sector Plan, with some 35 companies identified as potential beneficiaries.
The plan calls for the national phase-out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) - the last group scheduled for phase-out in the Philippines. HCFCs are mainly used by the foam, commercial and domestic refrigeration and air-conditioning, solvent, fire extinguishing, and servicing sectors.
The first stage of the phase-out programme was to freeze HCFC consumption relative to the baseline by 2013, with a ten-percent reduction in HCFC imports by 2015. Also, non-HCFC technologies such as cyclopentane, supercritical carbon dioxide (SSCO2), all-water technology, and supercritical CO2-assisted water-blown technology will be explored.