Profit Centers in Industrial Ecology: The Business Executive's Approach to the Environment

By Ronald S. Smith Jr. | Go to book overview

Introduction

The existence of pollution is not a subject of debate in American society today. The primary source of bitter argument and confrontation over the environment centers on the damages of pollution and the limitations of our natural resources. The reasons why we need clean drinking water, clean air and uncontaminated earth are self-evident. There is little agreement, however, on the means by which we can recover and preserve these things. In order to resolve the debate we must seek out ways to maintain living standards and eliminate the pollution and the waste. In a regulated society with strong environmental laws, environmental issues are economic issues. Inevitably, attempts to preserve the environment revolve around the costs of pollution, either through prevention, conservation or cleanup. It is expected that, over the next fifteen years, the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act and other U.S. laws will impose on business costs of hundreds of billions of dollars. These regulations will affect all businesses, from the local dry cleaner to the megacorporation. It has been said that a businessman tends to go down with his business; that a successful manager can’t change his methods and adapt to new ways, however inevitable that change becomes. Perhaps it may be easier if the new ways could be proven to increase profits. That’s what this book is about—change, profitable change and environmental management.

It is not unreasonable to believe that modern industry, the standard of living and the preservation of the environment can be made to accommodate each other. Finding ways to limit the causes of pollution while meeting the requirements of modern industry is therefore a worthwhile endeavor. In pursuit of this goal, new remedies have been proposed to educate and assist the industrial society. One such remedy has been dubbed ‘‘industrial ecology.’’ The term defines a discipline advocating a closed loop model of manufacturing in which

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Profit Centers in Industrial Ecology: The Business Executive's Approach to the Environment
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Overview of U.S. Environmental Regulation 9
  • Chapter 2 - Pollution Prevention 19
  • Chapter 3 - Workplace Environment 101
  • Chapter 4 - Environmental Management Systems 151
  • Chapter 5 - On-Site Case Studies, Environmental Management 207
  • Conclusion 235
  • Appendix I 243
  • Appendix II 245
  • Glossary 249
  • Selected Bibliography 269
  • Index 271
  • About the Author 276
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