Volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from consumer and commercial products like paint and coatings were a significant contributing factor in the creation of air pollution in urban areas. The use of consumer and commercial products results in low-level emissions of VOCs from solvent-based products, and to a lesser extent, water-based coatings products. These emissions contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone and fine particulate matter, which form smog. Smog is known to have adverse effects on human health and the environment. Canada has been working to reduce emissions of air pollutants in order to protect the environment and health of Canadians. The paint and coatings industry has taken this seriously and reduced VOC emissions by more than 75 percent in the past ten years with close to 100 percent of coatings now water-based, including the majority of automotive coatings. The result has been huge, with 41 kilotonnes of VOC emissions reduced by Canada’s coatings industry over the past 10 years. This is equivalent to emissions from 3.3 million cars taken of the road annually.
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