Implementation Strategies for the Ford Waste Minimization Program 940543
The environmental impact of manufacturing operations is a continuing concern due to increasing regulatory pressures, heightening public awareness about the environment, and rising costs associated with the treatment and disposal of wastes. Ford Motor Company has adopted a proactive waste minimization strategy for handling manufacturing emissions in a cost-effective fashion. A waste opportunity assessment was performed at the Livonia Transmission Plant and succeeded in identifying over $1.2 million in waste reduction opportunities. The assessment suggests that immediate, low-cost opportunities to reduce waste generation exist at Ford facilities. These short-term opportunities can be addressed without major process or facility modifications, but they do require a greater investment in time and resources to identify problem areas and to act on them. A guidebook and training program have been developed to assist plants in forming waste minimization teams and conducting internal assessments to realize the first tier opportunities. The training will be used to establish teams at various Ford locations. Many long-range opportunities also exist; to realize them requires more uniform and accurate facility reporting, more information on the environmental impacts of hazardous and toxic wastes, and consideration of waste generation earlier in the manufacturing and product design processes.