Efficient Manufacturing is Green Manufacturing by Its Very Nature

Last year, I was reading Industrial Engineer, I think it was the June 2010 issue, and there was this interesting article with a green designing and engineering theme titled; “The Lean to Green Revolution” by J.T. Black and Don T. Phillips. It was something you would expect due to the huge PR push to make everything green. Indeed, the low-carbon footprint rage is on in nearly every industry isn’t it? Yes, and these authors surely made a note of that fact in their well-written and fairly interesting article.
Still, I’d like to make a comment. You see, it is my contention that “Efficient Manufacturing is Green Manufacturing by Its Very Nature, and really, philosophically speaking; “That’s all you really need to know.” Why you ask? It’s simple really, because in the manufacturing process, anything left over is waste, and that includes any scrap created, gasses escaping, or inefficient use of energy. See that point?
In other words, if your processes in manufacturing are the epitome of efficiency, chances are you are already green, and have hit the point of cost breakpoint and diminishing returns on any “green” upgrades. Now it’s nice to consider all this, and try to rationalize a Levels Of Industrial Development “Good Samaritan” point of view, but you must also consider the creation of new tools for your manufacturing plant and the pollution or waste created by the company that is making the green apparatus to make your factory a tiny little bit greener and more efficient.
Consider if you will that “wind turbine” generators require a cement base and the creation of that concrete base will produce CO2, thus, offsetting any real savings. Consider that if you buy solar panels from China, they use an etching compound that creates a vapor (gas) which 18,500 times worse Manufacturing Engineer Jobs for the atmosphere than any known greenhouse gas. Thus, you are not really helping anyone, but yes, you will “look good” to all the global warming alarmists, ecologists, environmentalists, and who knows may be you’ll even get a tax credit, subsidy, or the world’s best PR in the media.
Still, that does not automatically make it better, more efficient, or greener. The problem with all this green push, is that we are pushing so hard, no one has stopped to see where we are really going with it, or what the actual end-game is. In fact, maybe it’s time we interject some common sense to all this, because it’s long over do. Please consider all this.

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