Fire fighting chemicals market size is forecast to reach US$2.8 billion by 2027 after growing at a CAGR of 4.2% during the forecast period 2022-2027. Fire is one of the major causes of accidents and results in damage to life and property. Fire can be caused due to several reasons such as improper storage and handling of raw materials, electrical fires, kitchen fires, explosions, etc. Various chemicals such as monoammonium phosphate, carbon dioxide, sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, potassium citrate, etc. are used as fire fighting chemicals to control a fire outbreak. But each class of fire calls for a use of a special fire fighting chemical. For instance, dry powder sodium bicarbonate is excellent for putting out electrical fires and fires caused by flammable liquids but is not used for fires caused by paper, wood, or other ordinary combustible materials. The steady growth in the construction industry drives the fire fighting chemicals market as there are mandatory safety regulations in place especially concerning a fire outbreak.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every industry worldwide. The construction industry was also not spared. The construction industry has seen many ups and downs throughout the pandemic. Construction came to a complete standstill due to lockdown measures and stay-at-home mandates. On the other hand, as the number of cases was rising, hospitals were full and countries resorted to the construction of new hospitals, some were even constructed in a record few weeks. After the initial lockdown when economic activities were allowed, the construction industry still faced challenges in the form of supply chain disruptions and operational constraints. Some building-materials supply chains have also been interrupted, suspending production and distribution. Many are also facing worker shortages. Four in five construction firms surveyed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors UK say building material shortages are constraining activity, and two-thirds are finding it difficult to hire bricklayers and carpenters. White-collar professionals include quantity surveyors are also increasingly unavailable, according to the survey. As newer constructions have to comply with fire safety regulations, this also has had an impact on the fire fighting chemicals market in 2020.
Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Segment Analysis – By Chemical
The monoammonium phosphate segment held the largest share in the fire fighting chemicals market in 2021 and is forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 3.8% during the forecast period. Monoammonium phosphate is a yellow dry powder firefighting chemical. Dry chemical powders are important firefighting agents. The main advantage is being able to immediately extinguish a fire. Furthermore, dry powders can be used to extinguish large-scale fires, spillage fires, and 3-dimensional fires. Monoammonium phosphate is used to extinguish fires involving wood, paper, cloth, (Class A fire) flammable liquids (petroleum, diesel, alcohol, oil, etc.) (Class B fire), and fires involving electrical appliances (class C fire). Hence, it is also known as a multipurpose dry chemical. It is also eco-friendly and non-toxic. Monoammonium phosphate-based dry powders are unique among dry chemicals because of the A rating. This chemical is at least 4 to 5 times as effective as an equal weight of water on Class A fires. Based on all the above merits, the monoammonium phosphate segment is set to dominate the fire fighting chemicals market during the forecast period.
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Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Segment Analysis – By Application
The fire extinguishers segment held the largest share in the fire fighting chemicals market of more than 50% in 2021. A fire extinguisher is an active fire fighting device used to control small fires. Typically, there are two types- fixed fire extinguishers and portable fire extinguishers. Fixed fire extinguishers are useful in unmanned locations and data centers, they are automatically activated when the temperature of the place quickly goes up indicating a fire. Portable fire extinguishers are small cylinders that help put out a small fire quickly. Portable fire extinguishers are commonly seen in houses, offices, hospitals, hotels, schools and other commercial buildings. According to Fire Safe Europe, the European association for fire safety in buildings, more than 4,000 people are killed by fire in Europe every year. Fire extinguishers may contain dry powder, wet chemicals, foam or carbon dioxide. Each of these chemicals is suitable for different classes of fire. For instance, foam is preferred to fight fires caused due to wood, paper, cloth, and flammable liquids (class A & B fires) but not against electrical fires (class C fires). Fire extinguishers are a key element of comprehensive fire safety and, in commercial and industrial properties, are often required by legal health and safety regulations. Therefore, the fire extinguishers segment is set to dominate the fire fighting chemicals market.
Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Segment Analysis – By Geography
The Asia-Pacific region held the largest share in the fire fighting chemicals market in 2021 up to 40%, owing to the number of chemical industries in the region and also the boom in the construction sector. Despite the standstill in economic activities in the first half of 2020, the construction sector is on a rebound. Especially in China where construction is viewed as an economic cure that led the country out of the pandemic slump. China’s new infrastructure plan includes 5G networks, Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, and data centers. According to the China Electronic Information Industry Development, the country is expected to spend approximately US$1.3 trillion on new infrastructure projects. Residential construction slowed down in 2020 but gradually began picking up pace in 2021. Government schemes like Home Builder and Solar Upgrade have been supporting the growth of residential construction in Australia. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the total number of dwellings units approved in the country rose by 36.6% in the first five months of 2021. As part of the 2021 budget, the Malaysian government announced support for the housing sector, which will benefit first-time homebuyers until 2022. The government allocated funds for the construction of houses for low-income home buyers under the People’s Housing Program. With the increase in construction activities in the region, the sales of fire fighting chemicals are also expected to increase as new buildings must have fire protection equipment installed which drives the fire fighting chemicals market.
Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Drivers
Fire Safety Regulations
Buildings must be designed in a way such as they offer an acceptable level of fire safety and minimize the potential for death or injury to the occupants or fire rescue personnel, as well as to ensure that most parts of a building can be repaired after a fire. With rapid development across the globe, fire hazards in buildings have become a growing concern in recent years. According to the National Statistics UK, in the year 2020, there were 64,066 primary fires across the UK. Of the 27,482 primary dwelling fires attended by the fire and rescue services, around 74% were in houses, bungalows, converted flats, and other properties, whilst around 26% were in purpose-built flats. Hence, fire safety regulations are established by state legislations or an association that oversees fire protection and prevention. Its common practice to see fire extinguishers in residential and commercial buildings. High-rise buildings, which are harder to access and evacuate, should consider installing automatic sprinkler systems. The National Fire Protection Association, a US-based organization, estimates that automatic suppression systems lower the cost of damage by 60%. Hence, the increasing demand for safety regulations from the building and construction industry is expected to drive the fire fighting chemicals market growth.
Development of Eco-Friendly Products
While most of the firefighting chemicals are non-toxic, they may still cause eutrophication of lakes especially when fighting wildfires. Australia experienced extensive wildfires between 2019-2020 and more than 10 million hectares (25 million acres) have been destroyed. To fight these vast forest fires, aircraft primarily used water-bombing and fire retardants. Fire retardants consist of chemicals made from a combination of wetting agents and foaming chemicals, fertilizers (ammonium and diammonium sulfate and ammonium phosphate) mixed with thickeners and corrosion inhibitors. They are mixed with water to form a foam or slurry. While the retardants are not believed to be harmful to humans or mammals, there are concerns over fish kills and harmful algal blooms when the retardants are used near waterways. To overcome such risks, BIOEX, an eco-friendly firefighting foam manufacturer, developed BIO FOR, a 100% fluorine-free foam that is totally biodegradable and can be used to put out wildfires. Thus, the development of eco-friendly products acts as a driver for the fire fighting chemicals market.
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Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Challenges
Environmental Concerns Over Certain Fire Fighting Chemicals
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have unique chemical properties which make them useful for a range of commercial and industrial applications including firefighting foams. Exposure to PFAS has been associated with liver damage, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. PFAS are environmentally stable and can leach into groundwater, these chemicals can cause public health and environmental harm long after their release. Certain PFAS also may break down in the environment to form other PFAS chemicals. When aqueous film-forming foams (AFFF) is repeatedly used in one area over a long period of time (for example, fire fighting training facilities) it can cause toxicity and nutrient loading in the soil. According to the US Environment Working Group, there are safer and equally effective alternatives to AFFF, and many US states prohibit the use of PFAS-based foams, such as AFFF. The National Defense Authorization Act directs all Department of Defense fire departments to stop using AFFF and AR-AFFF by 2024. The Congress directed federal work safety experts to certify PFAS-free firefighting gear as well. Such concerns over certain fire fighting chemicals can prove to be a challenge.
Fire Fighting Chemicals Market Landscape
Technology launches, acquisitions, and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the fire fighting chemicals market. Fire fighting chemicals market top companies are:
EuroChem Group AG
Foamtech Antifire Company
Columbus Chemical Industries
SafeQuip (Pty) Ltd.
In June 2021, Incendin, a leading developer of chemicals for the fire safety industry, launched FFX, a range of fluorine-free additives for portable fire extinguishers. FFX is mainly made with natural renewable raw materials, which do not contain or release any environmentally critical substances such as PFAS or silicones.
Asia-Pacific dominates the fire fighting chemicals market, owing to the number of chemical industries and construction activities in the region. According to Invest India, the chemicals & petrochemicals sector is expected to grow to $300 billion by 2025.
Various chemicals such as sodium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, carbon dioxide, sodium chloride, monoammonium phosphate, etc. are employed as firefighting chemicals.
Sodium bicarbonate and potassium bicarbonate are dry chemical powders that are used for extinguishing fires involving flammable liquids, gases and electrical equipment. Carbon dioxide is preferably used for electrical fires as it leaves no residue after the fire is extinguished.
The major opportunity for this market is high research spending to develop eco-friendly products.
Fire Protection Materials Market
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