VOC Solvents Emissions Directive (Directive 1999/13/EC on the limitation of emissions of volatile organic compounds due to the use of organic solvents in certain activities and installations) is the main policy instrument for the reduction of industrial emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the European Union. It covers a wide range of solvent using activities, e.g. printing, surface cleaning, vehicle coating, dry cleaning and manufacture of footwear and pharmaceutical products. The Directive sets out emission limit values for VOCs in waste gases and maximum levels for fugitive emissions (expressed as percentage of solvent input) or total emission limit values.

New installations have to comply with the requirements of the VOC Solvents Emissions Directive at the time they are starting the activity. The final implementation date for existing installations was 31 October 2007.

The Original VOC Solvents Emissions Directive has been amended through article 13 of the Paints Directive (Directive 2004/42/EC). The amendment removed a subactivity of "Vehicle Refinishing" ("the coating of road vehicles as defined in Directive 70/156/EEC, or part of them, carried out as part of vehicle repair, conservation or decoration outside of manufacturing installations") from the scope of the VOC Solvents Emissions Directive, as the "vehicle refinishing products" fall under the scope of the Paints-Directive (Directive 2004/42/EC).

In addition, some of the plants covered by the VOC Solvents Emissions Directive are also covered by the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC) Directive. In these cases, the VOC Solvents Emissions Directive only sets minimum obligations which are not necessarily sufficient to comply with the IPPC Directive. Such compliance may involve more stringent emission limit values, emission limit values for other substances and other media, and other appropriate conditions. Details of emissions from installations falling under both VOC Solvents Emissions Directive and IPPC Directive can be accessed via the European Release and Transfer Register (E-PRTR). In essence, the IPPC Directive is about minimising pollution from various industrial sources throughout the European Union.

New installations, and existing installations which are subject to "substantial changes", have been required to meet the requirements of the IPPC Directive since 30 October 1999. Other existing installations had to be brought into compliance by 30 October 2007.

The IPPC Directive is based on several principles, namely (1) an integrated approach, (2) best available techniques, (3) flexibility and (4) public participation.

The integrated approach means that the permits must take into account the whole environmental performance of the plant, covering e.g. emissions to air, water and land, generation of waste, use of raw materials, energy efficiency, noise, prevention of accidents, and restoration of the site upon closure. The purpose of the Directive is to ensure a high level of protection of the environment taken as a whole.

The permit conditions including emission limit values (ELVs) must be based on Best Available Techniques (BAT) , as defined in the IPPC Directive. To assist the licensing authorities and companies to determine BAT, the Commission organises an exchange of information between experts from the EU Member States, industry and environmental organisations. This results in the adoption and publication by the Commission of the BAT Reference Documents (the so-called BREFs).

Together with our partners, Altera can offer solutions for waste air treatment in all Western Balkan countries – primarily in solving of problems with solvent VOC. We are representative of italian company Airprotech specialized in designing, constructing and supplying “turnkey” plants for the purification of polluting gas emissions, based on reliable and modern technologies, deriving from the experience applied to the different product sectors, with technicians featuring 25 years of experience in the field.

In terms of strategy definition, Airprotech is a "Customer-Oriented" company, specialized in the supply of turnkey plants and post-sale services. The company is structured for guaranteeing a constant relationship with its customers, characterized by a great reliability.

Product portfolio cosist of:


They exploit the capacity of a mass of inert material (porcelain, corderite) of cyclically accumulating and give back heat. The efficacy of the thermal recovery can reach 96%, thus drastically reducing the plant managing costs.

This is an application of the regenerative system for the removal of chlorinated organic substances typical of the chemical sector and of the chemical-pharmaceutical synthesis.

The recuperative facilities provide for installation of one/ heat exchanger that heats the air entering in the fascility thrugh the coming out smokes. The efficiency of the thermical recover can reach the 65%. The possible still usefull energy can be recovered during the production for services.

The reaction of thermal oxidation of organic substances is carried out using high-performance platinum and palladium catalysts.

The engineering company is structured for developing processes suitable for specific applications and requests.


Used mainly in petrochemical and Oil&Gas fields, can be:

Rotating and static incinerating ovens for solid and liquid industrial waste. The types are:


Low/average concentrations of S.O.V. in high air flows are concentrated in a ZEOLITE-based adsorption system with continuative regeneration. The regeneration SOVs are then destined to the combustion in traditional systems or to the eventual recovery.

Airprotech systems are used in variety of industries for different applications – pharmaceutical, painting, graphic, checmical, food…

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