How will manufacturing address the needs of the planet in the following decade?
Over the years, people have become more environmentally aware. This is due to better education, research, and understanding of how we impact the ecosystems around us. As a result, consumers have begun to demand that products are manufactured in an environmentally sustainable manner. Those businesses that choose to manufacture products with traditional methods are at serious risk of falling behind the competition.
Advanced manufacturing methods and greater precision
New manufacturing methods have made it possible for products to be made with more precision. This means that waste is reduced. This has an environmental impact on many levels. When less materials are transported there is less carbon monoxide released, so there is less greenhouse effect. Water can be saved because there are less raw materials being used to get the same product. Transducer Techniques specializes in providing industry with load cells and other equipment that is used to reduce waste.
Renewable energy solutions are gaining a lot of ground in the industrial sector. Some plants are using panels to heat water for production and employee use. Even small businesses are sporting solar panels on their roof to offset electrical costs. Manufacturers that use a lot of water can generate energy using hydroelectric turbines.
Energy costs can fluctuate. Conducting an audit of the energy used in your manufacturing process can help you find where you can improve your energy usage. Sometimes simple solutions can save a lot of money in energy costs over time. When manufacturing burns less energy, both the company and the environment win.
The manufacturing process and maintaining a facility can lead to a lot of water being used. With the price of water on the rise and many areas experiencing drought, if there is a good way to conserve groundwater reservoirs, then it should be done. Although rainwater might not be able to be used for drinking water, it can be used for flushing toilets, manufacturing processes, washing hands, etc.
While a manufacturer can make a good effort to not waste anything, some waste is bound to happen. Recycling has become more common at all levels of manufacturing. Sometimes costs can be reduced because some recyclables have a value; metals particularly so. Making sure all breakrooms and boardrooms are equipped with recycle bins ensures a higher recycling participation rate. Explaining to employees the importance of recycling can also encourage participation. Perhaps money recouped from recycling could be donated to an environmental non-profit in the names of the employees. This can spread goodwill and camaraderie at a facility.
A green future ahead
Green manufacturing technologies will continue to become a larger part of the manufacturing industry. This is because everyone benefits. When waste is reduced, manufacturers save money. Less materials used means less environmental resources being used overall, leading to positive environmental effects. As processes improve, we will all be able to enjoy a higher and healthier standard of living.