A new project in the UK aims to “engage and empower all levels of the workforce” in the process of reducing carbon emissions from the paper industry. The Carbon Circles Project is being undertaken by PITA, the Paper Industry Technical Association, with support from the Carbon Trust.
According to PITA, paper production in the UK results in total CO2 emissions of about 4.5Mt, yet the use of recycled paper products (much of which is produced in the UK) allows other sectors of industry and commerce to reduce their carbon footprint by nearly 10Mt2.
“Whilst this net contribution to reducing emissions is significant, there is scope to further reduce the direct industry emissions even further,” the association states. “Many short to medium term improvements can be realized by raising awareness and empowering the workforce to ‘make a difference’, and involving them in the carbon reduction/energy saving process – resulting in savings in the work place and at home.”
The Carbon Circles Project draws upon the established Kaizen Methodology (continuous improvement) as developed in the quality sector as ‘Quality Circles’ in the 1970s. Applying this technique to carbon is expected to achieve the same significant compound improvements.
Project manager Barry Read, says: “Globally, we are at a very early stage in the development of ‘carbon management’ and it is clear that this could develop along similar lines to quality and environmental issues, where internationally recognized management standards have been developed. The carbon circles project is a small step down that road, small but vitally important.”
The initial pilot scheme will run until April, 2008, and hopes to develop to the point where participants may qualify for a Vocationally Related Qualification.
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