As I write this today, I have already attended one Halloween costume event, and we are getting ready for the little ghosts and goblins to come to our door in a few days. My message for you is this: Don’t get tricked into thinking you can’t treat yourself to sustainable solutions in your business. Sometimes it just takes a little creativity to develop a good idea, persistence to create and prove the societal benefits, and crunching the numbers to determine if the idea makes good economic sense.
A few weeks ago, I attended the Rubber Division, American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting in Pittsburgh. It was so nice to be able to network in person again. That seemed to be the recurring sentiment from just about everyone who was there. For those of you not familiar with this meeting, they had an Expo with 138 vendors and suppliers to the Rubber Industry. I was impressed that so many of the suppliers had an emphasis on sustainability. In the past, this has been a difficult topic for the rubber industry because of the vulcanized nature of rubber, but it seems that more progress is being made in this area, and that was very refreshing to see.
In addition to the Expo, there were also several technical sessions on sustainable and renewable materials. A few of the topics that companies and researchers provided information on included:
- plant-based or renewable elastomers and raw materials
- carbon black made from a cleaner process, reducing greenhouse gas emissions
- recycling of carbon black, mineral fillers, and rubber
- devulcanizing or pyrolysis of rubber tires
- retreading solutions
I truly find it refreshing that Sustainability is becoming such a buzzword. In some cases even, it’s a requirement for doing business.
Often when we think of Sustainability, we think it only means that the product must be environmentally friendly. We also tend to think that this means we will lose properties and the cost will be higher. Actually, that is not the case. In order to claim that a product is Sustainable, it must be good for the environment, good for society, as well as economically sound. If the product does not meet all three of these criteria, it cannot be considered Sustainable. A product that doesn’t make money is not going to be around for the long haul, and it’s certainly the goal to develop products that are going to stick around.
At Strategic Realm Consulting, we can help with life cycle assessments and collaborate on ideas for better sustainability. Contact us, and let’s discuss ways we can help you make improvements.