Free Sample: Design for the Environment paper example for writing essay

Design for the Environment - Essay Example

The research register for this Journal is available at http://move. Mecum. Com/ research_registers The current issue and full text archive of this Journal is available at http:// www. Emerald-library. Com/Ft An approach to achieve the ISO 14000 international standardization Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, USA Keywords ISO 14000, Design, Environment, International standards, Product life cycle Abstract It Is proposed that by adopting design for the environment (UDF) principles, US companies can easily comply with the environmental portion of the International

Standards Organization (ISO) 14000 standards and become competitive in today’s global market. UDF concepts present unique challenges to designers and introduce significant changes In the company’s market share and profitability without sacrificing sustainable development. The design engineers must ask and answer questions about the life cycle of the product and its production process. Their goal is reducing overall production costs and environmental impact of waste production and disposal by optimizing energy and material consumption, minimizing waste enervation, or by reusing process output waste streams as raw materials for other processes.

Application of UDF principles in the first stages of process design can change a product life cycle by not only reducing overall cost, but also the environmental impact of production and disposal. Design for the environment (UDF) M. Dominance and T. E. Baxter Г? Design for the environment (UDF) 51 Introduction The International Standards Organization (ISO) has initiated proactive environmental practices as a requirement for conducting business overseas with the release of ISO 14000 standards. Market forces are driving US companies to adopt ISO standards.

The extent of worldwide participation on ISO environmental standards Is a prime motivation for businesses of all sizes to conform to these standards as a condition for international trade. The ISO 14000 series contains voluntary environmental management standards and guidelines that require a commitment to practice pollution prevention and supports a proactive design concept at very basic levels of production. The ISO 14000 standard will quickly become the common standard among international corporations as a result of the world’s market rapidly paving towards globalization.

Many experts predict that the adoption of these standards will bring Immense benefits such as: broadening market access, reducing liability, expediting permits, reducing record keeping, need for fewer Inspections, improving public acceptance of product, decreasing pollution, conserving energy or 1 OFF ISO 14000 implementation will be, for many, a long adaptation process. Companies very often overlook wasteful operations because they fall within limits of current industrial practice. The lack of awareness is the major limiting factor for an effective manufacturing process.

Design engineers and Environmental Management and Health, Volvo. 12 No. 1, 2001, up. 51-56. # MAC university press, 0956-6163 MME 52 business personnel often lack the necessary skills to identify potential sources of waste early in the product design stage. Waste is generated at all stages of production, product use, and disposal. Despite continued efforts, industrial generated waste still accounts for 98 percent of the total waste generated on the entire product life cycle (Ballasts and Basally, 1997).

In traditional manufacturing engineering, the design engineer considers the cost and availability of materials thou any relationship with environmental impacts of the product and manufacturing process. At the end, the engineer would identify permits, and establish a system for monitoring and disposing of the end-of-pipe manufacturing wastes. Consequently, regulatory agencies exercise their command-and-control or end-of-pipe regulations through threat of fines. This situation still defines the current stage of our environmental policies (Asheville et al. 1997). What many have overlooked are the expensive disposal problems resulting from these practices. They an be avoided by adopting the use of materials that are environmentally benign substitutes. If the true cost of environmental maintenance were identified, the free market would encourage the development of technology for the most efficient use of resources and reduce pollution generation. Sustainability and preventive technology in today’s world leads to modern engineering practices that are important for an environmental-conscious community.

After several decades of treating pollution, scientists and technicians realized that it is not enough to use an end-of-pipe treatment approach. Pollution prevention and sustainable technology are key factors to reduce hazards, energy conservation and to achieve successful product design. Adopting design for the environment (UDF) Current practices of recycling and remunerating are the basis for future environmentally-conscious engineering. In recent years, the need for new design approaches that could offer more efficient and environmentally sound products has become a high level issue for a successful design process.

New methodologies such as design for manufacture and assembly (DAFT), concurrent engineering (CE) and design for disassembly (DVD) were plopped. However, design for the environment (UDF) has become the most promising methodology to reverse decades of environment neglect by manufacturers and engineers. UDF encompasses all the new methodologies, while focusing on the minimization of manufacturing environmental impacts by introducing modifications production-oriented industries could benefit from the application of green engineering”, including all raw material producers, manufacturers, product users, recyclers, and waste handlers.

To achieve this goal and become ISO 14000 certified, a ore efficient and modern manufacturing is guided towards green engineering requiring the application of UDF methods. It has been a challenge to introduce DEFT concepts into certain groups because they are still skeptical about the benefits coming from the ISO 14000 standards. They believe that environmental regulations are an unfair burden in a highly competitive economy and a potential barrier to free trade. These ideas come from a time when resources were plentiful, and only incidental environmental adverse effects were related to waste generation or to material utilization.

Their main ideas for product sign were basically based in product performance and ease of production (Rejoinders, 1996; Alton, 1992, 1994; Shins, 1991). As the world’s environmental problems continued to increase, the establishment of federal and state regulations addressed the public concerns and the concept of ‘ ‘ green engineering” was introduced in modern design practices. UDF methods Manufacturing and design tend to have iterative interactions during early stages of product development. The design engineer would study problems in the production line and consider all opportunities to reduce production cost or timing.

The traditional product life cycle analysis is expanded to include UDF considerations of materials elimination or substitution, process optimization, energy reduction and product reuse. UDF gives guidelines for the design engineer to examine the environmental soundness of a product over its entire life cycle. As a result, waste is reduced, energy and material consumption are optimized and an output waste stream process can become the raw material for another process. This modern design practice will suggest alternative production approaches that will lead to restructuring of the processes.

This approach depends on an understanding of all the objectives of the design, encompassing the analysis of the industrial ecosystem. The diagram presented in Figure 1 shows the steps taken during the UDF process. First, the design engineer develops a preliminary assessment for product requirements, risk and cost. During the second step, the environmental impact of the product life cycle must be evaluated against other alternatives for reducing, recycling or eliminating product wastes during manufacturing. Consideration should also be given to customer needs, resource conservation and org conditions.

The conservation of natural resources starts at the very beginning by substituting, as much as possible, raw material suppliers with recycling suppliers. A complete product life cycle should be considered when designing a product. Product life cycle can be defined as ‘ ‘need recognition, design development, production, distribution, use and disposal” and where within each aspect several conditions are optimized for pollution reduction and resource conservation (Alton, 1992, 1994). Alternatives for design can go far to improve the UDF process.

Materials search can consider respectability and risibility, long-term impact on the Design for the environment (UDF) 53 54 Figure 1. UDF В± process diagram environment, manufacturing energy requirements, and capability for easy assembly and disassembly. Principles of design for assembly (DEAF) and DVD are used to optimize the production line or improve the product recycle at the end of its life cycle (Wilder, 1990; Bothered and Detours, 1987). Very often, such considerations are not done in concurrence, and the design engineer faces complex trade-offs while selecting between different design alternatives (Clark et al. 996). During the final analysis, the environmental impacts of each alternative design should be included as part of the process selection. The next step is the optimization of manufacturing time, amount of material used, process maintainability and waste disposal or treatment. These parameters should be considered without compromising work condition, safety and product quality. Finally, the product will be distributed, used and at the end of its life cycle will be disposed of or recycled.

UDF implementation versus ISO 14000 implementation In Table l, the overall objectives for UDF are ampere to the overall objectives for ISO 14000. By making this comparison, it becomes very evident that not only is UDF more comprehensive than ISO 14000, but also that UDF can essentially provide the ability to be fully compatible with ISO 14000. While only one out of the 12 ISO 14000 objectives is not readily met by UDF, the overall list of objectives for UDF and the commitment to environmental consciousness that this represents is impressive when compared against ISO 14000.

Objectives Continuous improvement in environmental performance Maintaining good public/community relations Obtaining insurance at reasonable cost Enhancing mage and market share Meeting vendor certification criteria Improving cost control Reducing incidents that result in liability Demonstrating reasonable care Conserving input materials and energy Facilitating the receipt of permits and authorizations.