No business is too small to make a positive impact on our local natural resources. In fact, three of our member companies have exemplified ways in which industry can be better environmental stewards, reducing their carbon footprint.
Here are 3 (easy) Ways Industry Can Be Better Environmental Stewards – Things that you can implement this week on a large or small scale.
Recycling can go beyond placing paper products in a separate bin in the office. In 2019, Aker Solutions recycled over 90 tons of material. In addition to recycling office waste, the company’s supply chain was instrumental in working with vendors to reuse and recycle excess materials such as PVC, wooden pallets, reels and cardboard. Some materials, including excess copy paper, steel tubing and cables were donated to area schools, oyster farmers and the AIDT training center.
PEP Member Company, Evonik traditionally disposed of damaged wooden pallets in a local landfill until they developed a partnership with another local company, which repairs broken pallets and grinds pallets beyond repair into 1 inch chips. Those chips are used for energy production in the form of steam or electric power. With this new partnership, Evonik is able to recycle 100% of their pallets and wood waste.
REDUCE FUEL CONSUMPTION
There are many ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including energy efficiency, fuel switching, combined heat and power, use of renewable energy, and the more efficient use and recycling of materials.
Until recently, APM Terminals used a fleet of gas-powered vehicles, which were responsible for a large potion of greenhouse gas emissions at the
terminal. Advances in electric vehicles have allowed the terminal to begin replacing gas powered trucks with electric models.
Aker Solutions developed mobile dollies to transport equipment around their workshops, reducing forklift use. The company purchased thirty electric powered golf carts for transportation across the site, replacing the use of has vehicles, which translated to a savings of over 200 gallons of diesel and 400 gallons of gasoline per month. One additional tactic the company has used to reduce fuel consumption is encouraging employees to video conference rather than fly and carpooling when possible.
According to the EPA, 1.5 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions would be saved if every office product purchased in the US was ENERGY STAR certified.
APM recently replaced 280 100-watt high pressure sodium floodlights with 538-watt, energy efficient LED floodlights, which results in a 42% reduction in electric consumption and a 54% reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. Other energy-efficient updates include replacing office light switches with motion sensor switches and replacing five air conditioning unites with units that are 40% more efficient.
Changes like these don’t have to be done all at once but can be achievable by replacing old, outdated equipment over time with energy efficient models.
Aker Solutions recently replaced outdated halide light fixtures with energy-efficient LED units. Additionally, they renovated their air handling units, converting from water-cooled to air-cooled. By doing so, the company eliminated the need to treat more than 10 million gallons of water per year.
As evidenced in the examples above, small (and big) changes positively impact the environment AND the bottom line. What is changes is YOUR company implementing in order to be a better environmental steward? We want to know! Email us and share your story.