Identifying the Main Sources of Environmental Harm in Production

Identifying the Main Sources of Environmental Harm in Production

By Discovery Lean Six Sigma

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Identifying the Main Sources of Environmental Harm in Production

If you’re trying to be more green in your manufacturing processes, you need to start by identifying the main problems that cause harm in the first place. These will vary from one company to another, and they won’t be immediately obvious in every case. But with enough experience – and enough collected data – you should be able to build a list of the main issues sooner or later.

The Obvious Culprits

There are some things that pretty much every manufacturing facility is guilty of. Environmental pollution tied to smoke and other harmful particles can be easy to track down if you know where to look. In most cases, you’ll probably already know what you’re emitting in the first place. Make sure to check all venues for this – air, water, soil, and anything else that might be relevant to your business.

Also, it might be worth investing in some more modern measurement tools to keep track of the situation in your facilities remotely. This can go a long way towards making your manufacturing processes greener in the long run, especially as you continue to expand your facilities.

Energy Consumption and Origins

Even if you’re not the one polluting the environment directly, that doesn’t mean you’re not contributing to its harm. A production facility typically uses a lot of power, especially in some specific industries. And this power has to come from somewhere – however, most business owners don’t typically pay too much attention to the origin of their own energy.

And sure, green power can cost a bit more, depending on your supplier, but there are various hints that this trend is going to reverse in the not too distant future. As more people start to realize the harmful impacts of certain power production channels, we should see more attention being paid to clean, green energy, which will make it more available to everyone sooner or later.

Reducing Production Waste

Another point to consider is how much waste you’re creating in your typical production run. Sometimes the number might be startling, especially if you’ve never done any analysis on it in the past. Production waste can come in all shapes and sizes, and sometimes it boils down to using your resources more efficiently and not squandering them.

Many business owners make the mistake of getting too comfortable in their situations, believing that they have no reason to optimize the resource utilization of their plants. And when you crunch the numbers in the long run, the effects can be quite frightening.

Packaging and Transportation

If you’re producing physical goods, it’s also a good idea to check how much harm you might be contributing to the environment with your packaging and transportation practices. This can be difficult to measure in some cases, especially if you’re relying on external partners for that, but you should do your best to evaluate the situation and figure out ways to reduce your impact on that front.

Sometimes, that alone can have the biggest potential impact on your contribution to the environment. And it’s a good idea to keep it in check in the long run as well, because it’s a factor that can change a lot over time.

Recycling Options

Last but not least, try to consider some more environmentally friendly ways to get rid of your waste. Recycling is becoming more accessible and widespread every day, and we constantly see new options on that front. Even if your waste can’t be recycled efficiently today, keep checking back – you never know when you’re going to see the right kinds of advances on the market!

And when that happens, it’s important to seize it and implement it into your own workflow as quickly as possible. Improving your recycling practices will become increasingly more important in the long run.


Paying attention to all fronts can be difficult when it comes to reducing the environmental harm of your production facilities. But once you get started, it will become increasingly easier to identify the true sources of harm, and you’ll get better and better at getting rid of them. And before you know it, this will be one of the main points of your work. Which is not a bad thing at all – it means that your company is ready for the future!

The post Identifying the Main Sources of Environmental Harm in Production appeared first on Shmula.

By: Shmula Contributor
Posted: June 23, 2019, 5:32 pm

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