5 Easy Go Green Initiatives for Manufacturers
After decades of pollution and global warming, the manufacturing industry is recognizing its contribution to pollution and understands its responsibility to implement “Go Green” initiatives that will reduce waste. Here are 5 easy go green initiatives you can implement today.
Whether you have a small manufacturing business or manage a large corporation, there are several Go Green initiatives that can be implemented without requiring significant capital investment or ongoing operational expense. Many Go Green initiatives can save your business money. Go Green initiatives that can be easily implemented are:
Renewable energy technology has improved significantly in the last decade. A multitude of sources are now accessible to everyone and provide renewable energy options for almost every type of manufacturing business in any location.
The 2019 Clean Jobs America report estimates that renewable energy will be the main global power source by the year 2035. Furthermore, solar, wind, biomass, geothermal, and rain are significantly cheaper than traditional energy sources. Depending on the country you live in, you may be able to receive government investment subsidies or tax incentives in support of switching to renewable energy sources.
Reduce the environmental impact of your business by reducing manufacturing waste. This can be done in several ways, but the most obvious is to review processes to identify areas for waste reduction. An example is optimizing the number of parts cut from a sheet of metal, or regrinding and reusing sprues of injection molded parts.
Specialized technologies like centrifugation, electrolysis, reverse osmosis, and filtration can help recover waste from onsite and offsite processes. Industrial shredders can help to reduce the bulk of certain waste materials like wood (from pallets), plastic (from pipes or car parts), rubber (from old tires or conveyor belts), and metals (from steel offcuts or discarded furniture). This waste can then be repurposed in other applications such as roads, outdoor furniture, and so on.
Even though we currently live in the most digital era in human history, a lot of businesses still use a lot of paper. This does not have to be the case, as several systems and software applications exist that allow for efficient paperless onsite and offsite communication while also improving quality and improving productivity.
Going paperless is good for the environment because it reduces the demand for pulpwood and potentially harmful inks. It also saves money, allows for real-time information updates, and minimizes errors.
It may sound daunting and expensive, but introducing an Environmental Management System (EMS) does not have to be either. An EMS is a framework of processes and procedures that will help reduce your business’ environmental impact while increasing efficiency. Increased control of the environmental aspect of processes will help identify areas where Go Green initiatives would make the most financial sense.
If you do not have the resources available to formulate and implement an EMS, you can hire a consultant. A good consultant will devise the right system for your business, ensuring you gain maximum return on your investment.
A simple, clear, and convenient recycling program will achieve greater buy-in and support from employees. Awareness training and incentive programs will contribute to the long-term success of a recycling program.
Recycling points should also be easily accessible. Place recycling bins in multiple locations, such as the factory, the office building, and indoor and outdoor recreation areas. Provide separate bins for different categories of waste like plastics, paper, organic waste, and glass. This will ensure that waste is automatically separated and will force employees to be aware of the types of waste they generate.
It is no small task to make your manufacturing business eco-friendly. But it is well worth the effort for both the environment and your pocketbook. Contact the experienced team at Xometry for guidance on implementing Go Green initiatives in your business.