The Cleaner Production Demonstration Project (the Project) was an initiative of Environment Australia -Environment Protection Group (the EPG). The aim of the Project was to raise the awareness of Australian industry and actively promote cleaner production issues. This was to be achieved by conducting ten successful cleaner production demonstration projects in industry around Australia, documenting the benefits and experiences of the project, and publicising the results to wider industry. Dames & Moore, assisted by Energetics, were engaged as technical consultants on the project. The project commenced in June 1994, and ran for 27 months.
Moore Business Systems in Wodonga, Vic was selected as one of the ten companies to participate in the Project. This case study report presents a record of the progress of the Moore Business project, from initial meeting to project completion, and details the results of the Project any problems or lessons which may been encountered. The case study demonstrates the application of Cleaner Production to the printing industry.
Moore Business Systems has two sites in Wodonga, situated side by side, named Wodonga #2 and Wodonga #3. The Wodonga #2 was selected as the most appropriate site for inclusion in the Cleaner Production Demonstration Program. This site specialises in the production of computer printout paper and Moore Clean Print (MCP) Production. The principal processes that occur are paper cutting and packing and paper coating.
Completion of the Moore Business project comprised a number of stages, as follows:
- an initial audit of the site, and discussions with site personnel to identify general opportunities for cleaner production;
- follow-up site visits and meetings to identify more specific cleaner production opportunities;
- investigation of the perceived benefits and drawbacks associated with each of the opportunities, to assist site
- management in deciding which of the potential projects to implement at the site;
- implementing the selected projects;
- monitoring the success of the projects; and
- documenting the results
Only two relatively simple, but very effective, cleaner production initiatives were implemented as part of the Project. Both projects involved management of the production process and a review of work procedures and machine set-up.
Significant environmental benefits have resulted with respect to a decrease in waste paper produced and more productive use of raw materials. The quantity of waste paper produced was reduced by approximately 50%, energy usage reduced by 6% and productivity increased by 5%. The financial savings associated with the project were significant, of the order of $350,000 per year.
Key to the success of the Project was the commitment by all levels of management and staff to the Project and the use of a team based approach. This approach, and an openness to question the conventional wisdom of how the plant was operated, allowed for the involvement of large number of people into the Project. The input from non-technical or non-production personnel also played an important role in the success of the Project.
The Project demonstrated that significant non-environmental benefits can be obtained through cleaner production initiatives. In this case, this included significantly higher productivity and improved working conditions. It also demonstrated that the environmental benefits can be significantly greater than first perceived and that a review of the Project, through a well considered monitoring and review program can identify other benefits.
The Project also highlighted that significant environmental and economic benefits may be achieved without having to outlay any capital costs. This reflects the importance of management controls or initiatives as part of any potential cleaner production initiative.
The Moore Business Systems Demonstration Project demonstrates a number of important lessons in the implementation of successful cleaner production. These are:
- management commitment is critical;
- a team based approach encourages commitment and ownership of the initiatives;
- non-technical and non-production personnel can have a valuable input into the process;
- personnel must have an open mind and question the conventional wisdom of how the plant is operated;
- many initiatives can involve little or no capital costs;
- cleaner production initiatives may be non-engineering or technical. Changes to management controls or initiatives can lead to significant benefits; and
- a good monitoring process allows for an effective review process