Implementation of Green and Lean manufacturing in post processing activities : A qualitative case study at a barrier coating facility

University essay from Karlstads universitet/Fakulteten för hälsa, natur- och teknikvetenskap (from 2013)

Abstract: To reach the sustainable development goals of agenda 2030, mankind must continuously work towards developing sustainable industrial processes. The concept of Total Quality Management, Lean/Green manufacturing has been frequently applied separately, but studies indicate that the combination of the concepts can yield synergically benefits from an economic and environmental perspective. The process industry has a continuous flow of residuals which is a potential opportunity to gain a competitive edge through eliminating waste and embracing a circular economy system. The lack of exploring operational methods to achieve better results in relation to waste management and utilization of waste have inspired this thesis. This study has established a chain of events that enable other researchers and managers to find, define, explain and solve problems connected to waste management systems. The results indicate that it is possible to find opportunities within the organization to reuse already procured resources but also that the utility of storage vessels is connected to the overall efficiency of the waste management system. Interestingly, the results also indicate that there is an industrial culture related to the case that hampers the increase of efficiency which can be explained by the cornerstones of Total Quality Management and Lean manufacturing. Lean waste i.e., unused creativity thrives and hampers new ways to decrease cost and lower environmental impact when employees are not encouraged to communicate or innovate. Monetary gains and environmental savings is achievable by measuring, including and involving personal combined with a dedicated management.

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