Can manufacturing be green? When we hear “manufacturing” we imagine industrial production with a lot of waste and other non-eco-friendly by-products. However, green technology manufacturing brings a new dimension to the old school industrial manufacturing process. Traditional manufacturing methods are transforming into more collaborative and pro-green leading to the fundamental change of the industrial sector.
Humanity has never been more concerned about the state of the environment we live in. It’s safe to say, incorporating green technologies into production process is the way to reflect the increasing awareness in terms of climate change and the footprint we leave on this planet. On the flip side, emerging green technologies (EGTs) can save manufacturing businesses a lot of costs in the long-term perspective. All around the world, governments are developing incentives for companies willing to adopt green technologies in their production processes.
Green Technology Manufacturing – What Is It?
Green technology is defined as the application of advanced systems to wide variety of industry sectors to improve sustainability and efficiency. Adopting EGTs helps to significantly reduce energy and water usage as well as reduce the waste, emissions of carbon and toxic gases. Green technologies create systems to reuse and recycle all types of materials.
Efficient Energy and Water Usage
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Industrial sector accounts for 21% of all greenhouse gas emissions being the third after Transportation and Electricity. This figure is truly impressive and not in a positive way. On the other hand, manufacturers are concerned about the cost of energy and water. Operating EDM die sinking machines, printing machines, injection moulding machines (the list can go on) requires high volumes of power and water. Reducing the operating costs in combination with causing less impact to the environment leads to the adoption of green technology manufacturing. EGTs support energy production from renewable or alternative sources. When it comes to water, saving of water is performed through recycling and conservation. It is important to mention, almost one fifth of GDP is produced in water scarce areas which puts even a bigger emphasis on water preservation.
Managing Waste and Recycling
Over the years, it became insufficient to just manage production waste properly. Nowadays, bigger emphasis is put on recycling and reusing waste in order to give it a second chance. Pollution services control emissions in order to eliminate toxic waste. EGTs also influence the changes in industrial processes, such as factory automation, for the purpose of increasing efficiency in heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
Production Boost Thanks to Green Technology
Green technology manufacturing is without a doubt a new challenge the industrial sector is facing. A push for alternative energy and water sources leads to the evolution of industrial manufacturing and design. New components – such as wind turbines or solar panels – have to be produced on a much larger scale.
So what are the latest challenges green technology is facing?
- Focus on mass production and efficiency
- Reduce the number of parts needed to build green technology
- EGTs being aligned with industrial standards and capabilities
- Build supply chains for steel, glass, adhesives
The main goal is to reduce the cost of green manufacturing so that it becomes appealing to all businesses. Green technology manufacturing has to transform into sustainable business in itself. There is a huge demand for green manufacturing and it becomes more available, yet we are not quite there yet. However, EGTs are being integrated into the industry on a daily basis providing companies with new clients and helping them to increase awareness about their brand. Once again in the history of manufacturing we face the challenge to increase efficiency of the new technology and reduce the production cost. It is important to keep in mind though, green technology manufacturing does not only save businesses money, it saves the planet we live in.
Green Technology Incentives
Back in 2005, the EU launched the Emissions Trading System scheme which was the first incentive of this kind. Up till this day, it remains the largest greenhouse gas emissions incentive worldwide. It also represents the major pillar of the EU climate policy and strives to create financial incentives for factories and production plants in order to reduce the emissions level.
It becomes crucial for manufacturers to closely monitor how much natural resources, energy and water the production process requires. It becomes a necessity to invest into installing tracking systems to monitor the usage of all resources, especially the ones associated with energy. Green technologies represent a helping hand, providing the alternative to help reduce the production costs and at the same time lower impact on the environment.