The manufacturing industry, like many others, faces great challenges, especially during the current circumstances. We are in the midst of the COVID pandemic, which has caused so much hardship and pain people, along with a declining economic outlook. If there is something the current circumstances have taught us, is that our life can drastically change overnight, and there is not much we can do to regain our previous balance, at least not immediately.
This time, it has been COVID-19. Who knows what may happen next? What if nature failed us or just gave up on us? Have you ever stopped to consider this? This is our big why. Many years ago, Dale Carnegie said that we are in the business of humanity and at Wogaard, we like to say that we are in the business of preserving nature for our future generations.
There is always a higher purpose to what we do. Of course, we want to support clients making cost savings and improving their manufacturing processes, but together we have a bigger mission, which is to become more sustainable to support the environment.
As challenging as this may sound, Sustainability is going to have a major impact on people, society, and environment with the industry playing a major part. I think of it as a three-piece puzzle. If you do not get one piece right, it is not complete.
Sustainability and environmental discussions in manufacturing, like most engineering projects, will have people with a mix set of mindsets from positive to negative. That is engineering, we must view logically and work on the benefits and different disadvantages to weigh it all up. Of course, there are cost implications and justifications as per most continuous improvement projects. However, initially, mindset is the key.
So, here is a question for you. What is the overall mindset in your organisation when it comes to Sustainability?
Now, that is an interesting question and perspective, isn’t it? Of course, overall, most of us would like to see improvements in this area. However, the hurdles become apparent when we view this through a costs and resources lens. After all, manufacturing companies are here to manufacture and service to make profit, create expansion, employment, technological advancements, and wealth. Therefore, it can create a negative tunnel vision mindset when the words sustainability or environment are mentioned.
It is important to highlight that there will be global task force's and governments striving towards net carbon zero targets by 2050 or earlier to reduce the co2 emissions to diminish the damage to climate which is obviously apparent and will only get worse unless we act. Thankfully, some governments are acting and beginning to commit to these sustainability goals. For example, the UK is on a similar path to Sweden, nonetheless, still a long way to go, as is the rest of the world. There will be stronger legislation in our industry and enforcement to achieve these goals. On the positive side, more government incentives are being made available for businesses to achieve these results and will only increase, I am sure.
We are already seeing supply chains that monitor sustainability environmental commitments throughout the process. Smart technology will also go a long way to contribute towards this as a real focus that everything we operate, manufacture, lose source will have environmental elements built within to achieve sustainability goals.
Of course, there are larger organisations working on sustainable energy with the likes of electric hydrogen, nuclear energy, along with wind and solar, etc. Manufacturing covers a broad area, and again, I am not here to run through every discipline, but I would like to make special emphasis on energy usage, wastage, recycling, logistics, emissions, resources, supply, to name a few.
So, what is the key that will make us do something about it? And what is in it for us? Well, I think that is a lot easier to do with a smaller bite sized steps approach that will contribute massively to the bigger picture of carbon net zero and reducing emissions.
At Wogaard, we are focused on the oil and coolant industry. However, one of our missions is to create a platform that can really feed off all areas of sustainability and manufacture. As an SME ourselves, we also know it is not easy for companies to allocate project groups to work on this area. So again, we want to explore how we can do this from bite sized steps and then the larger project principles can be introduced, and accreditations achieved, of course, being the ISO 14,001 an example. These may also become mandatory in the supply chain.
We look forward to you joining us on this platform. And we have all blogs and events coming soon. Thank you for your time reading and listening.