Manufacturers are going green but need help – EEF

Posted on 28 Aug 2008 by The Manufacturer

The fight from British manufacturers on the ‘green’ front has been labeled “positive” by the EEF although a survey from the representative organization highlighted that more headway still needs to be made.

From the survey, the EEF concluded that it is happy with the focus manufacturers are applying with regards to energy use and waste management but it said more needs to be done in terms of resource efficiency and that external support structures need to be put in place to further aid waste issues. The EEF said it felt a “lack of infrastructure” in certain areas of the country made optimum eco-waste management unaffordable for some firms.

“With increased governmental, regulatory and stakeholder pressure, the environment agenda is a heightened priority for UK manufacturers,” said EEF head of environment, Gareth Stace. “Contrary to popular belief many have already taken steps to reduce their impact on the environment and are committed to doing more.”

The report found that small and medium-sized firms especially need assistance to improve their environmental footings. Only 58 per cent of these have a fully approved environmental policy compared with 90 per cent of larger companies.

Bill McCausland is a production specialist at the government-funded environmental business advice organization Envirowise who jointly published the report. He said “The survey shows that the sector has clear environmental priorities and is engaged and committed to do more to reduce its impacts.”

“And with continued pressure on manufacturers to manage the impact of higher raw material costs, taking a systematic approach to resource efficiency can provide manufacturers with a sustainable strategy of cost reduction in this competitive market,” added McCausland.

The EEF said firms need specific on-site environmental guidance from official sources rather than just general advice.

Sustainable Manufacturing – Ensuring ethical business is one of the four topic streams at The Manufacturer Live event in October, held at the Excel Centre, London. Speakers from organizations like the Carbon Trust and British Gas will present delegates with guides and case studies on the best way to improve the environmental effects of their practices.

To find out more about Live or to book a place visit Alternatively, call Jane Larcombe on 01603 671300.

What more can government bodies do to help your firm go green? Leave us a comment below…