Increasingly common in our green vocabulary are phrases like Product Stewardship, Extended Producer Responsibility and Original Equipment Manufacturer. These are all phrases used to promote the idea that responsibility for a product must ultimately extend to everyone involved in the life cycle of that product.
Undisturbed, Mother Nature, has no difficulty with these recycling concepts. Plants are grown in the soil and returned to the soil, for example, and new vegetation is created. It is seamless and unless interfered with, the process has no resistance.
Human beings, on the other hand, are continuing to struggle with the idea that the products we develop must be created with a plan in mind to deal with them properly after they have passed their useful life.
Responsible Manufacturing Is Little More Than ‘Thinking It Through’.
Making sure a product is responsibly manufactured is really just a matter of engineering in reverse and requires the same type of Research and Development that is employed at the front end when products are designed and manufactured.
Around the world there is legislation being initiated to try and level the playing field for manufacturers. Some of it is clumsy but it is intended to ensure that products are safer, more responsible and more recyclable and it is gaining traction. Companies are scrambling to get their message out around these new concepts of stewardship and producer responsibility.
In A World of Diminishing Resources, Practicality Is King
As in nature, there is a balance to be struck. We don’t want to stifle innovation by raising barriers to entry in terms of the cost of creating new products. The fact is, however, as we continue to deplete traditional supplies of non-renewable resources in a world of expanding demand, the ability to recover resources and reuse them should be incentive enough to look at this problem in a practical way.
To find out more about product stewardship in Ontario, and how manufacturers and consumers alike can make a difference, visit
Scrap Metal Tips And Tricks
Around the time of your weekly collection day, have a look at the old barbecues that your neighbours leave at the curb the night before and see if they are gone by the morning. With the exception of appropriate safety equipment, the only thing really needed to de-engineer this product into its various components is a “persuader” in the form of a good mallet.
For tips on doing this, check out www.scrappingmetal.blogspot.com and click on the April icon.