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There is an increasing emphasis of supply chain management in creating the proper ingredients of a successful business strategy. The concept of a green supply chain is gaining interest among operations practitioners as a sustainable and profitable undertaking. A green supply chain can be thought of as a supply chain that has integrated environmental thinking into core operations from material sourcing through product design, manufacturing, distribution, delivery, and end-of-life recycling.
by Dave Meyer, Sustainable Economic and Environmental Development Solutions (SEEDS) Global Alliance (Northwest Operations) and SVP of Greenbridge International, LLC. Follow Dave on Twitter @DRMeyer1 and LinkedIn.
Well, can the economic tides be turning? In my former home base of San Diego, they had a saying: “It takes a long time to carefully turn an aircraft carrier around”. Capgemini Consulting’s new study of 300 leading companies across Europe, US, Asia-pacific and Latin America states that economic recovery has surpassed economic downturn in the list of business drivers for 2010.
Some key findings of note from a supply chain perspective:
These findings really suggest that while the road to recovery is long, that much foundational work remains. But the trend from survival to revival is in play now.
Perhaps the biggest take-away from this report is the increasing emphasis of supply chain management in creating the proper ingredients of a successful business strategy. And coincidentally, the concept of a Green Supply Chain is gaining interest among operations practitioners as a sustainable and profitable undertaking. A Green Supply Chain can be thought of as a supply chain that has integrated environmental thinking into core operations from material sourcing through product design, manufacturing, distribution, delivery, and end-of-life recycling.
The implementation of Green Supply Chain initiatives has evolved from strictly a compliance issue into a means of generating value. Traditionally, companies incorporating green projects have focused solely on cost avoidance by assuring compliance, minimizing risk, maintaining health, and protecting the environment. In the emerging value-creation model, implementing green initiatives along a company’s supply chain can raise productivity, enhance customer and supplier relations, support innovation, and enable growth. The Green Supply Chain is no longer exclusively about green issues, but also about generating efficiencies and cost containment. As organizations restructure to reduce their company’s environmental footprint, supply chains have increasingly become a key area of focus. Improvements in transportation efficiency, operations, raw material selection and packaging are all topping the list of “green” supply chain initiatives.
Green Supply Chains enable organizations to:
The ISO 14001 Certification / Supply Chain Nexus
Over the past several years, studies have been performed worldwide comparing ISO 14001-2004 and its value in development of green supply chains.
Questions and issues to consider when developing your Supply Chain/Value Network:
The Green Economy Post assembled a number of Green Supply Chain studies to assist you in your efforts to understand and address these issues in your business (15 Green Supply Chain Studies You Should Know About).
Environmentally responsible procurement, in alignment with your company’s environmental sustainability values, is critical for organizations that desire to manage their environmental risk and maintain a competitive advantage.
Not only does this mean that businesses must choose their suppliers well, they also have to ensure that suppliers comply with the standards they claim to meet.
© 2010, Dave Meyer. All rights reserved. Do not republish.
Author: Dave Meyer (8 Articles)
Dave Meyer serves dual roles as VP of Sustainable Economic and Environmental Development Solutions (SEEDS) Global Alliance (Northwest Operations) and SVP of Greenbridge International, LLC , a global ISO 14001 training company. His principal focus has been to help public and private organizations achieve environmental sustainability program excellence, leverage regulatory compliance risks, optimize organizational effectiveness, and create upstream value in highly competitive marketsDave has over 30 years of progressive experience in sustainable supply chain procurement, ISO 14001/OHSAS 18001 Environmental & Safety Management, multi-media environmental permitting and compliance, environmental liability auditing, natural resources conservation, water and wastewater quality, energy and climate policy, facility siting and management. You can follow Dave on Twitter (@DRMeyer1) and LinkedIn.