Architectural paint has long been known to be environmentally dangerous. Technology is slowly making advances in this field, but there are still a lot of paints out there that carry chemicals that are harmful to the environment.
By far, the most important environmental aspect of paint is the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These are found in both oil-based and water-based paints, but reacts much more harmfully in oil-based paint. Paints with VOCs are especially dangerous to use externally as they react with sunlight to create smog. But even when used internally, everything but the solid particles of the paint evaporates into the air. Once VOCs enter the atmosphere, they react with nitrogen to produce ground-level ozone. Professionals from Toronto painters have a know how in this type of technology.
Indoor air is also affected by VOCs by creating an atmosphere that is irritant to the lungs. Perhaps the most surprising fact about VOCs is that they are commonly found in paint used in healthcare facilities. This is especially disheartening due to its capability to contribute to kidney and liver damage. Some of these paints also contain carcinogens that possess the power to create cancer in the human body. The reason this paint is used so commonly by city painters is that the solvent of oil significantly increases paint performance.
VOCs found in paint also contribute significantly to global warming. The creation of bad ozone is the primary problem that creates the greenhouse effect. We cannot afford to continue to use these paints at the expense of our lungs and our planet.
It can be tempting for city painters to buy solvent (oil) based paints because of their high performance, but the environmental impact of this paint is too high to wish away or not think about .
The use of VOCs is now regulated by law, but oil-based paint still contains a higher concentration of VOCs than what is optimum for a healthy environment. Scientists are now saying that not all VOCs produce the same effects, and that we should also test for reactivity in determining chemical safety. The debate is still ongoing, but studies should begin to show the results of these tests fairly soon.