Riordan Manufacturing wants to improve its sustainability practices. In this paper Learning Team C summarizes the business audit assessments on Table one that contains important objectives, targets, and programs involving sustainability. The next section identifies and summarizes the relevant technologies, strategies, products, and practices that increase sustainability. Learning Team C also identifies three best practices that Riordan Manufacturing should consider implementing by describing new items or practices to implement, a summary of cost-benefits, justify why benefits outweigh the costs, and implementation steps for the new items. The last section is a discussion about if the EMS recommendations eliminate the need to comply with state or federal regulations.
Environmental policy will require objectives that focus environmental actions to achieve targets that use quantifiable measures with specific endpoints that relate to the objectives and develop progressive goals that responsible parties’ actions must achieve. In the appendix Table one the Development of Environmental Policy Commitment is an assessment summary nonsustainable process, objectives, target, programs, and responsible party at Riordan Manufacturing four locations Michigan, California, Georgia, and China. Beginning with policy commitment, the rows develop nonsustainable initiatives that Riordan should commit to resolve at each facility.
The next column objectives provide the specificity of nonsustainable operational areas that align to specific task for focusing resources and efforts. Targets are quantifiable goals in percentages and have a definite ending point for concluding actions reflect periods of a year or months. The environmental program found on table one are a result from planning activities by the responsible party who is accountable for the activities of the implementation team.
The responsible party will represent each environmental policy and the selection of each employee was on interest basis to establish an environmental management system at Riordan. This list of individuals is not exhaustive and additional employees with skills and interest may join to assist responsible parties achieve policy objectives. According to Wilson and Sasseville (1999) it is important to remember when developing a new environmental management system takes no single approach for assigning responsibilities and in small companies an individual may have to handle several functions.
Technology, Strategies, Products or Practices The Environmental Protection Agency (2002) describes the permanent total enclosure (PTE) as a capture device that collects and vents organic hazardous air pollutants (HAP) and volatile organic compounds (VOC) to an abatement device. The PTE can be permanent or temporary enclosures that must pass a five point Environmental Protection Agency Method 204 the Criteria and Verification of a Permanent or Temporary Total Enclosure to qualify as an PTE. Once the criteria are met the PTE is assumed to have 100% capture efficiency. If Riordan chooses an PTE the organization can avoid the need for frequent capture efficiency test. The PTE meets or exceeds requirement by the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPs). This technology can align to Triple Bottom Line minimization strategy by reducing hazardous air pollutants in addition to improving worker health and safety throughout the receiving and molding operations at Riordan facilities.
The energy performance indicators (EPI) are technology that the Environmental Protection Agency supports to manage how manufacturing plants use energy and compares to the industry standard. Riordan Manufacturing may obtain an Environmental Protection Agency energy performance indicator through Energy Star. Operational energy use data enter the device and an energy efficiency test follows the Environmental Protection Agency scoring guidelines on a scale of one to 100 that compares results against nonpublic Census Bureau data. An accurate measurement of energy using EPI technology as a tool produces benefits that reduce energy waste and can align with a minimization sustainability strategy that decreases fossil fuel use.
Riordan can address their need to find a sustainable method of treating waste water produced during the molding and mixing processes by partnering with a company already utilizing Ultrafiltration systems to eliminate ground contamination. Ultra filtration (UF) is a pressure-driven process that removes emulsified oils, metal hydroxides, colloids, emulsions, dispersed material, suspended solids, and other large molecular weight materials from water and other solutions. (“About Ultrafiltration”, 2012). Ultra filtration also offers the additional advantage in that no chemical are used in the filtration process.
Three Best Practices
Riordan Manufacturing has three best practices this organization may choose to implement at the four manufacturing facilities that reduce three nonsustainable practices in the receiving and molding operations with byproducts of air pollution, water contamination, and energy waste. First, Riordan Manufacturing plants emit a volatile organic compound (VOCs) during plastic-injection creating a hazardous air byproduct that contributes climate change.
Riordan Manufacturing may combat VOC air emissions at the four facility locations by implementing a permanent total enclosure (PTE) or 100% capture room that contains harmful air pollutants effects from over spraying fugitive pollutants into the atmosphere. The second practice will combat ground and water contamination that streams from continual material spills in the receiving, and molding areas. A best practice to follow is requiring departments to reuse water throughout the manufacturing process and separate chemicals with a Ultrafiltration system. Small Business Division (2004) writes a Ultrafiltration system treat wastewaters by separating the fluids before it discharges remains into the sewer system.
The third practice for Riordan Manufacturing to combat is energy waste and should implement Energy Performance Indicators (EPIs) to benchmark energy consumption the four its manufacturing plants. Most energy waste comes from equipment settings, machinery left on during nonoperational hours, lighting, heating, and cooling at the four facilities. Machinery will perform better and reduce its energy consumption by cleaning and maintaining it properly, in addition to performing energy saving shutdowns.
The second best practice to consider is implementing energy reduction of facility lighting systems. According to Energy Star (n.d.) “Replace old fluorescent and incandescent lighting with T-8s, ENERGY STAR qualified compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and other energy-efficient lighting systems, and implement a regular lighting maintenance program” (p. 1).
New Business Practices Implementation Cost
Riordan should review the cost of pursuing air emission reduction; minimizing ground and water contamination, and energy conservation procedures before implementing the above-mentioned EMS recommendations. The initial cost includes time to evaluate and educate leaders, management, and employees on new practices and procedures. Riordan will need to review the environmental cost of pursuing PTE at the China facility to determine what government regulation are obstacles and effect implementation of an EMS for air pollution.
Potential financial costs include equipment maintenance for the PTE, especially the control device that must perform at an optimum energy savings capacity. Another environmental cost is for new energy efficient equipment to replace older inefficient machinery and the cost of adapting facilities to include a Ultrafiltration system. The implementation of an energy maintenance system that measure energy use is another financial cost in association with thec entire EMS recommendations.
New Business Practices Benefits
Facts prove the initial investment that transition a business practice to pro-environment policies is enabling many businesses to expand operations to enhance long-term endurance and profits. A short-Term advantage to an eco-friendly shift is the satisfaction that company actions are sustainable and may permit operations to earn more profits, boost a healthier environment, gain cost reductions, expand into new markets, and develop employee motivation and health.
Long-term gain can include a substantial economic performance by attracting socail responsible investors who prefer the practices of a sustainable company. This can put a business on track for listings on the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), the DJSI North America, or the DJSI United States. “Companies listed on the DJSI World Index enjoy benefits including improved access to investment capital (because shares of DJSI members are recommended for sustainability investing), prestige, and brand enhancement (because recognition as a global sustainability leader can enhance a company’s reputation in the eyes of stakeholders, financial analysts, and the public at large) “(Savits & Weber, 2006, p. 75).
New Practices Implementation Steps
To implement Riordan Manufacturing new sustainable policies and targets, responsible parties should take steps to implement the new environmental policies items. According to Wilson (1999) “The most important steps is to begin to focus your people and available resources toward the strategy and structure of your EMS” (p. 109). To implement an EMS, Riordan should follow six steps
1. Assessment and Evaluation of current policies and proposed policies.
2. Planning and Organizing
3. Developing and establishing communication with internal departments and external groups
4. Training in new procedures and policies
5. Ensuring Operational Control
6. Implement EMS Plans
Riordan Manufacturing deals in the development of plastic molding injection products that affect the environment. Compliance with Environmental Protection Agency guidelines are requirements despite any voluntary sustainable business plan Riordan decides to take. However, these recommendations permit the company to improve environmental standard without falling further out of compliance. Under Title VI of the Clean Air Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for enforcing regulations to protect the public from the airborne contaminants.
The Environmental Protection Agency looks to protect the ozone layer and to provide for a smooth transition away from ozone-depletion substances (US Environmental Protection Agency, 2011). This recommendation for reducing air pollution increases the efforts to maintain a safe breathable environment. By implementing a Ultrafiltration system and using water-based lubricants Riordan can comply with regulations to minimize hazardous waste streaming into the drainage systems.
The EPA expectation for leak and repair within a facility is also a requirement Riordan should focus on. The new regulatory standards improve the identification of air quality issues and take appropriate measures to resolve quickly compliance issues when situations arise, for example long-term worker health problems from exposure to high levels of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) emissions.
Manufacturing organizations are under scrutiny to provide a safe environment. The EPA uses stringent guidelines that businesses must follow if businesses want to alleviate financial burdens from fines and legal actions. Riordan Manufacturing EMS recommendations support environmental policies by using sustainability practice and reduce potential risk of violating regulations that the EPA enforces. The actions for establishing the EMS recommendation do not eliminate the need to comply with the state and federal regulations and permits Riordan to use sustainable practices to improve operations.
Learning Team C in this paper uses recommendations to explain the necessary consideration that Riordan Manufacturing should factor when developing and implementing sustainability practices at the four plant locations. This information should provide a good foundation for weighing the cost and benefits of increasing sustainability using strategies that incorporates technology, products, and practices that change how a traditional manufacturer operates.
Energy Star. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.virginiaenergysense.org/cue/pdfs/14_manufacturer.pdf . Manufacturing Plants: An Overview of Energy EPA, 2002. U.S. EPA, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, OAQPS EPA Air Pollution Control Cost Manual, Section 2 Chapter 3, EPA 452/B-02-001. Research Triangle Park, NC. http://www.epa.gov/ttn/catc/dir1/cs2ch3.pdf Savitz, A. W., & Weber, K. (2006). The triple bottom line; How todays best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success and how you can too.. Retrieved from https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary2/content/TOC.aspx?assetdataid=68ea 0c22-4a52-a8a2-6d888e1970b6&assetmetaid=110c35c0-5d52-4a67-b40 c0975f06a570 Wilson, G. W. (1999). Sustaining Environmental Management Success: Best Business Practice from Industry Leaders. Retrieved from https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary2/content/TOC.aspx?assetdataid=de10aede-2fb0-499c-8b65-d33031647201&assetmetaid=2a0eb9a1-2925-4fc6-8601-337d041e4274. US Environmental Protection Agency. (2011, October 26). Enforcement Actions under Title VI of the Clean Air Act. Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/ozone/enforce/index.html