02.03.2012 15:31


a) price differentiation: management controls costs and improves efficiency of the processes to generate value from competitors through technological innovation and good practice, which requires an efficient production system, an optimal use of raw materials and less waste generation.

b) differentiation of product or service: the customer perceives greater value by improving a product or service feature, which requires intimate knowledge of the niche market and have human resources, technology and logistics to satisfy it. 


Environmental management aims to balance the aspects of natural resources and environmental pollution with the other elements of sustainable development, such as the management of social and cultural components, and economic development. 
At the firm level environmental management is understood as a process of decision making related to managing the environmental variable in the design and implementation of management systems within companies and other organizations. 

a. Stages in the development of corporate environmental management

Stage 1. "Indifference." Approach companies are taking to respond to environmental problems and see the environmental compliance as an obstacle to the implementation of the business.

Stage 2. "Pollution control". Environmental regulation is met by controlling sources of  pollution, implementing solutions "end of pipe", some large companies have water treatment plants and a minority with emission control systems.

Stage 3. "Optimization process". Businesses take long-term patterns of implementing risk management as a rational method to balance environmental responsibility with the potential costs (eg GRI program, Responsible Care, environmental self-management) 
Stage 4. "Optimization of products." Look for opportunities to be environmentally efficient through the minimization of waste, its source reduction and other methods (eg eco-design that integrates environmental efficiency with economic efficiency). 
Stage 5. "Environmental quality". Those who adopt environmental quality as a dimension of total quality is managed in an integrated manner. No doubt the Colombian companies have not reached this level, but eses is the challenge of providing environmental consultancy Environmental Control.

b. Cleaner Production strategy of corporate environmental management. 
Corporate sustainability depends on the balance of three variables, proper management of resources, social management of employees and community and economic development of the enterprise that are integrated by continuous improvement to ensure greater value for stakeholders.

Cleaner production (CP) is a business strategy to achieve the goal of sustainable development by preventing the generation of pollutants at the source of its origin, rather than controlling them at the end of the process as "end of the tube." 
The cleaner production options are geared towards reducing the costs of inefficiency related to waste raw materials, supplies, material in process, products and finished products among others.

PML investments generate savings for companies, since they seek greater process efficiency, avoiding waste and preventing pollution. To implement this, there are countless tools and materials flow analysis and energy auditing schemes and life cycle assessment (LCA by its English acronym), among others, tools to be developed in future editions.

For this strategy, there are customers that make CP a green niche where the added value of the company against competitors, is access to these attractive markets that reward products that incorporate it, regardless of the price.

c. Levels of Application Cleaner Production in the company.

The cleanest product strategy must be accompanied by the implementation of an environmental management system to help internalize the environmental variable within the company that its application is not given in isolation, which is applied to processes, products and services.

A)   Application process. In terms of processes can be implemented by practices such as management of production processes (control outputs of water, energy and raw materials, control of process conditions such as temperature, humidity, and others collect debris removal, prevent leaks, optimize maintenance among others) changes in technology (rather than mechanical cleaning solvents and detergents, use of powder coating and non-traditional) and use of waste (recycling domestic waste water, refuse and recycling of products in these processes as an example of symbiosis industrial separation of obsolete packaging, etc.).

B)   Additionally, torque optimization process is a comprehensive application that should be all over in the production cycle level:

• Supplier Management. In the process of acquiring raw materials to be provided regularly and reliably (example: cardboard America design a logistics system to retrieve the pallets-pallets-and recall, with considerable savings and economies of virgin timber equivalent to 367 trees. 
• Storage. Conservation, classification and identification of raw materials and supplies with proper handling. Example: packing SA (pharmaceutical packaging) determined that improper storage of wing damage caused commodity product, why invest in improvements that reduce waste. 
• Power: is the movement of raw materials and inputs to on-site processing and insertion into the machinery. Ecuadorian example presented impressions dragging trash in the process of printing, which gave incentives to workers to avoid waste.

• Production process: optimization of resources like water and energy and materials to transform the raw material such as Juicy Fruit SA, achieving savings by reusing water from washing fruits. 
• Waste management: waste generated throughout the production cycle that may or may not be used by companies. As an example quoted Corabastos the process of implementing the use of organic waste from the main square of

Bogota DC, Colombia.

In summary, the optimization process can be done with good practices; (GMP) (package to the management and organization of the company and optimizing human and material resources to reduce waste and emissions) or by changes in technology.

B) Application-level products. This level seeks to identify, develop and implement competitive improvements in products taking into account the environmental priorities for strengthening the opportunities of the company, these improvements can be in: position of materials (solvents, water change, no acids, no chlorite, no heavy metals, etc.) or product redesign (using recycled materials, reducing materials, using reusable packaging, etc.). For example, "ecodesign" or development of transport packaging and display of beer or returnable reducing material (cardboard) and a better design to take advantage of storage spaces.

C) Application-level services. Can be given at hospitals and hotels especially when required to lend the raw material inputs and examples: Hacienda San Francisco (hotel) design a system of integrated solid waste management to solve the problem in this area that was in the opposite its image. 

The challenge of cleaner production strategy in confronting and overcoming the two types of barriers: a) environmental barriers of the company and b) barriers within the company.

A) Barriers to the business environment: the same exogenous factors, which may include: 
• Barriers to market. Associated with current or potential clients, and given that preferences are not enough green products, the classification of ambiguous green products because they are friendly to the environment but do not live in cleaner production, markets reward equal to the product treatment "at the end of the tube" as those of Production cleaner, green habits cultural problems, the markets do not punish polluters, ecolabelling is poorly designed and the financial markets enough to encourage cleaner production practitioners. 
• External financial barriers. Obstacles and take advantage of employer to obtain resources such as: lack of financing offers, lack of outreach on financing mechanisms, the low cost of natural resources does not justify the production ma clean. 
• legislative barriers. Associated political pressures and social problems: the tendency to prioritize responses technologies "at the end of the tube," the problems are seen in the effects and not causes, politicization of the law that favor short-term actions, lack of certainty continuity of rules over time and lack of environmental legislation. In summary, reactive rules, not proactive.

B) the company's internal barriers, that are endogenous to it as: 
• Technological barriers. They can be for lack thereof, be unavailable either because of lack of knowledge and / or resources, or inability to assimilate them by cost and availability, its apparent incompatibility with other stages of the process (sometimes) and problems economies of scale required for new technologies. 
• Organizational barriers: internal deficiencies in Airline Company such as lack of management commitment, lack of communication within the company, shortages of qualified human resources, ignorance of pollution sources, expect public recognition is not given and discourages the competition between departments of the company and the resistance to change.


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