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Lean & Environment Toolkit: Preface

Purpose of this Toolkit

The Lean and Environment Toolkit offers practical techniques and strategies that can help lean, environmental, and other specialists at your shopfloor to deliver environmentally protective lean decisions as a routine task of your lean driven business operations. In fact, this toolkit draws heavily from the experience of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) partners and organizations who have pioneered integrated approaches to lean and environmental decision making while at the same time delivering world class performance, exerting market leadership, and achieving bottom line results. Also, the toolkit builds on work conducted and research sponsored by EPA’s Lean and Environment Initiative.

This toolkit is written for lean operational managers, environmental practitioners, and lean practitioners who work towards organizational efforts to identify and eliminate environmental wastes. As a result, the toolkit may help align your environmental management system’s goals and objectives as a routine task of your lean initiatives and business decisions.

The Toolkit will help you identify waste in terms of energy, water, and materials use.  Identification of these environmental waste reduction opportunities is done  through Kaizen events, 6S (5S + Safety), and Value Stream Mapping.

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How to Use this Toolkit

The toolkit is structured in chapters, each focusing on strategies, tools, and techniques to enhance the success of Lean initiatives while improving environmental performance. Chapter1 is an introduction while Chapters 2–5 focus on core Lean methods and how-to strategies for leveraging environmental considerations to enhance Lean results. The diagram below illustrates how these chapters focus on coordinating Lean and environmental activities on different organizational levels—the value stream level, the process level, and the work area level. Chapter 6 provides summary points and guidance to assist you in putting the strategies and techniques discussed in the toolkit to work in your organization.

Improved Lean & Environmental Performance (Figure 1)The Toolkit uses icons to point out important information that might be new.

How to Use this Toolkit

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