DNO to paint the north of England green with mould-breaking eco-paint

The award-winning water-based, quick-drying Greenovoc paint is being supplied to north England power distributor Northern Powergrid by the north-eastern firm Rosh Engineering

An innovative “eco-paint” is set to help Northern Powergrid brush away the environmental impact of protecting its power assets, the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) announced today.

DNOs such as Northern Powergrid traditionally use alkyd paints on transformers and pylons, providing a vital protective coating to electricity network assets. Northern Powergrid currently uses thousands of gallons of paint each year to protect 1,200 transformers across its operating area of the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire.  

But such traditional solvent-based paints can emit more than half the liquid-weight as gases – known as volatile organic compounds (VOC) – into the atmosphere as they dry, impacting local air quality.

Now Northern Powergrid, which covers the North-East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire, is ditching the traditional paints and employing a new formula which eliminates the issue.

Supplied by north east firm Rosh Engineering, Greenovoc paint is water- rather than solvent-based. As well as improving local air quality, using this paint will cut the amount of material the operator needs to protect a power asset by a third, as a much thinner coat is sufficient to provide protection, the DNO said.

The paint also dries quicker and at lower temepratures, meaning assets will have to be taken offline for less time during maintenance. Northern Powergrid argues it expects the paint to reduce asset downtime by 166 days a year, which in turn will increase network resilience by minimising the risk of power outages.

“We’re committed to delivering cost-savings and driving sustainability across every element of our business. Enabling the switch to renewable energy and decarbonising transport are two significant ways we are going green, but this project demonstrates our commitment to achieving net-zero carbon emissions in every way possible,” said Geoff Earl, Northern Powergrid’s director of safety, health and environment. “This paint is a stroke of genius. It is a prime example of out-of-the-box thinking having a real and measurable positive impact on our local environmental footprint.”

Read more: businessgreen.com