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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Sustainable Manufacturing – Greening Processes, Systems and Products


Implementing green manufacturing, as the first step towards sustainable production, has been growing in interest and importance over the last few years. The opportunities for developing advanced manufacturing capabilities while, at the same time, reducing the impact of manufacturing on energy use, water and resource consumption and, overall, green house gas emissions and carbon footprint are numerous. This paper reviews the background, vocabulary and motivation for green manufacturing and highlights the competitive opportunities for manufacturers who embrace, seriously, this growing movement. The terms "green" and "sustainable" are defined in a manufacturing context, metrics and tools for assessing manufacturing are described, and some concrete examples of how to begin and what are others doing are given. Some of the future directions of green manufacturing are discussed.

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