This year we’ve launched several new initiatives within the NASF to better serve our member needs in the short term and the future. Our efforts are connected to some key themes – among them is the notion of “sustainability.”
For most of us, the discussion about sustainability isn’t exactly new. It’s about how to achieve both economic and environmental success over the long term. But reaching a sustainable endpoint from an environmental and a business perspective becomes ever more challenging as new potential restrictions on key finishes emerge from around the globe.
Chemicals and Metals Concerns
One concern is how the European REACH chemicals framework will continue to unfold, its impact on global companies and their internal procurement policies for metals and chemicals and, of course, its impact on the future of surface finishing and the enabling technologies and services we contribute to the manufacturing supply chain.
It’s been clear for some time that REACH isn’t just a concern for European finishing. Moreover, U.S. federal and state policy makers will continue to look at a more aggressive mandates on manufacturing and using chemicals, even when chemicals can be managed safely.
Coordination with New Global Finishing Partners
In response, NASF has highlighted REACH and chemicals regulation at our key 2010 events. We’ve also been working on closer collaboration with the major European plating and surface finishing associations, as well as the leading finishing association in Brazil, the ABTS.
The European Committee for Surface Treatment (CETS) – the federation of European-based plating associations, companies, suppliers and industrial customers of finishing – recently held its fall meeting in Birmingham, England, and welcomed NASF’s suggestion to share information and act in unison on major global regulatory threats.
Next on the docket for the coming year will be pending mandates on nickel plating and finishing issues. NASF is preparing a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to partner with our friends at CETS to ensure sustainable nickel finishing applications – among others – have a viable future.
In the meantime, we’re looking forward to another new announcement in December on where the NASF is headed next year on global finishing issues.