On behalf the French administration and ADEME, it was suggested at the EGTEI meeting of 10 October 2014, to update the work carried out by EGTEI in 2005 on VOC reduction technique costs for solvent users. This item was agreed at the meeting.

Between 2003 and 2006, EGTEI worked on the issue of costs related to VOC mitigation techniques, for the purpose of the LRTAP Convention and in close cooperation with the STS (Surface Treatment with Solvents) BREF Technical Working Group. This work was very comprehensive, and many sectors were covered: synopsis sheets on techno-economic data were produced for about 15 industrial sectors and shared with the STS BREF TWG. Cooperation between the two groups was very fruitful and many EGTEI inputs are referenced throughout the whole BREF; its section 24.1.1 is dedicated to the EGTEI work.

STS BREF revision is in progress by EIPPC Bureau of European Commission´s Joint Research Centre (JRC). This was considered as a good opportunity to update cost data gathered by EGTEI ten years ago.

In a first step, it was proposed to prioritize the work on the larger plants consuming more than 200 t solvent/year (thresholds considered in annex I of IED directive) and to focus on activities considered by the BREF STS.

In a second step, it was proposed possibly to consider the whole range of size of installations from the thresholds of annex VI of the Gothenburg Protocol (for memory, annex VI implements VOC ELVs for plants, from solvent consumption from 0.5 t/y; 2 or 5 t/y or even larger) and consider other activities covered by annex VI of the Gothenburg Protocol.

Two activities have been finaly considered: car manufacturing and flexible packaging printing. A tool ERICCa_VOC has been developed.

Flexible packaging printing

This report has been prepared in the context of the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution. Therefore, it is not focussing on specific regions or industries but providing a general overview of important aspects for the overall sector. We have developed a flexible methodology that can be applied to a broad variety of plants and applications in order to assess the economic and environmental effects of emission abatement measures.

In accordance with the work that is currently conducted by the EIPPC Bureau in Seville we focus on large installations with a solvent consumption of more than 200 t per year. Industry information has been provided primarily by the industry associations ESIG (European Solvents Industry Group), FPE (Flexible Packaging Europe), FTA Europe (European Flexographic Industry Association) and Intergraf (The European Federation for Print and Digital Communication).

Both primary measures (at the source) and secondary measures are covered (treatment of waste gas with VOCs).

Final report

Car manufacturing

The study has been carried out in order to estimate costs associated with the reduction of VOC emissions from paint shops in the car industry.

To estimate costs of VOC emission reduction, five reference plants have been defined in order to represent all families of paint shops encountered (Solvent Based, Solvent Based / Water Based Mix, Water Based, integrated process).

Three options to reduce VOC emissions for paint shops are considered:

  1. Primary measures corresponding to the reduction of VOC emissions at the source (reduction of solvent consumption or improved collection of solvent),
  2. Secondary measures to treat waste gases containing VOC (end of pipe techniques),
  3. Change for a new paint shop (which enables the use of water based paint systems, advanced paint application systems and waste gas treatment techniques)

For each type of measures, the following parameters are delivered:

  1. VOC emission reduction potentials based on data from plant solvent management plans, modeling and on case studies,
  2. Annual costs based on case studies and modelling,
  3. Cost effectiveness analysis linking VOC emission reduction and annual costs.

To assist the TFTEI technical secretariat to develop the cost estimations for VOC emission reduction from paint shops in the car industry, a working group was set up with representatives of ACEA and 3 car manufacturers (PSA, Renault, Volkswagen).

The study has been carried out with information provided by the working group. Six meetings with industry experts have been organized to exchange information and discuss the approach set up for cost estimation and results.

Final report on car manufacturing


The methodology for cost estimation of abatement options for VOCs has been developed for installations in the flexible packaging printing sector and car manufacturing with a solvent input of more than 200 tons per year. However, the design and costs of VOC reduction measures are similar for many other sectors with comparable operating conditions. The tool is therefore expected to be broadly applicable. The methodology provides cost data for primary measures (substitution of products with high solvent content, with some limits (as costs for primary measures are sector and plant specific)) and the secondary measures thermal oxidation and adsorption with solvent recovery. For secondary measures the tool can be used for any type of activities and size of plants (even consumption lower than 200 t/year), independently from primary measures. Costs are estimated for different regulatory objectives based on the solvent management plan methodology or not.


VOC emission reduction cost calculation methodology