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RachelleW posted a blog entry in Shades of an Apple Green HomeCompanies “going green” is a constantly growing trend that is intended to not only help out the environment but to help employment growth as well. Fortunately, the machining industry has the lead when it comes down to “green” jobs. With the inspiring popularity of machining companies to go eco-friendly, the more jobs appear across the nation. Create “Green” Facilities One of the easiest ways the machining industry can be more eco-conscious is to adopt “green” practices in their facilities. For example, an energy audit can help machining facilities eliminate energy wastefulness that can damage the surrounding environment. Plus, with the audit data, manufacturers can turn to eco-friendly lighting products and automated lighting fixtures that are only used when employees are present in the area. Additionally, inspecting and properly sealing manufacturing buildings from air leaks can help reduce heating and/or cooling costs throughout the year Reduce Waste It’s without a doubt that the machining industry uses raw materials to create new items. However, manufacturing facilities can optimize their eco-friendly side by reusing materials and carefully finding new ways to eliminate waste. Creating better automation and new facility procedures to help reduce waste can help lower the machining industry’s carbon footprint. At the same time, it’s important that facilities to identify and understand where waste occurs and become first responders to preventing it sitting in a landfill, reusing it the best they can. Choose Eco-Friendly Materials Fortunately, most companies are taking part in the new “green revolution,” using as many eco-friendly materials and machining lubricants as much as they can. Some companies, like ETNA Products Inc., realize that the machining industry can take part in this as well. Facilities that start sourcing environmentally-friendly materials from post-consumer waste, renewable agricultural resources, and waste streams can help prevent further damage to the environment. For example, converting materials from natural to a synthetic product can be a great stepping off point. Product Packaging One of the single most common items found in landfills across the world is product packaging. From plastic to styrofoam and paper, these items can mass up and cause toxins to harm the soil and air that we interact with on a daily basis. Fortunately, most manufacturing companies are always looking for new ways to safely package their products more eco-friendly. Adopting recyclable packaging is a great way to for the machining industry to be more eco-conscious. By enacting these four methods, you can turn your machining company into a more eco-friendly one
HannahWhittenly posted a blog entry in HannahWhittenly's BlogFactory farming is responsible for 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions. This is due to the resource intensive feeding, slaughtering, processing, and transporting involved in the process. This has led many to reach for an alternative to conventional meat, and it may seem surprising that many are choosing to raise their own livestock at home, however if you look at the specifics of the process you may find that it’s not such an outlandish option. Why it is a Green Alternative By keeping the process as small and local as it gets, you can enjoy high quality, ethical meat while negating many of the sources of emissions associated with factory farmed meat. The transportation of both the livestock’s food and the meat itself are cut out of the process, as are the emissions produced by the large farm equipment that industrial producers rely on. Furthermore you can monitor what, if any, antibiotics and hormones are used, making healthier meat that uses less resources. What You Need Obviously this is not the right option if you live in a small apartment. You need at least 1.5 acres per cow for adequate grazing, or the ability to supplement with oats or hay. While you can get by without any expensive farm equipment it may be helpful to have a riding mower for keeping your pasture manageable and a trailer for transporting your livestock. Of course you will also need a sturdy fence and padlock to keep your livestock safe and a large freezer for keeping the resulting meat. It can be ideal though if you have a lot of acres to maintain, and don’t want to spend money on landscaping or a lot of yard upkeep. The Cost There are numerous costs associated with raising livestock, not all of which are upfront. You will need to pay for the livestock itself, any farm equipment you find necessary, supplemental food, veterinarian costs, slaughter, and processing the meat. You can always save money at places like Central Farm and Garden on pasture alfalfa and grass as well. Overall it is difficult to give an estimate for the total cost of raising a cow from birth to slaughter as it varies widely, but most agree that the cost would exceed the market value of the meat due to economies of scale. However, the increased quality of the meat and the peace of mind from knowing that the animal was raised humanely, and sustainably is a huge non-monetary reward for raising livestock at home. Alternatives If you don’t have the space or ability to raise your own livestock, there are other options. You can invest in a share of an animal raised on another person’s property, and receive a portion of the meat. You can also buy your meat from small livestock farmers directly at farmers markets or their farm. Most are happy to answer any questions you may have on their practices. If you have room and time, chickens might be a more sustainable option as well since they provide not only meat, but eggs. If you decide raise your own meat you’re in for a rewarding and eco-friendly experience, but it is important to conduct a lot of research before you begin, both for your own sanity and for the health of the animal. However, all this effort is worth it to enjoy high quality meat with fewer environmental costs.