Interest in assessing the sustainability performance of manufacturing processes and systems during product design is increasing. Prior work has investigated approaches for quantifying and reducing impacts across the product life cycle. Energy consumption and carbon footprint are frequently adopted and investigated environmental performance metrics. However, challenges persist in concurrent consideration of environmental, economic, and social impacts resulting from manufacturing processes and supply chain networks. Companies are striving to manage their manufacturing networks to improve environmental and social performance, in addition to economic performance. In particular, social responsibility has gained visibility as a conduit to competitive advantage. Thus, a framework is presented for improving environmental and social performance through simultaneous consideration of manufacturing processes and supply chain activities. The framework builds upon the unit manufacturing process modeling method and is demonstrated for production of bicycle pedal components. For the case examined, it is found that unit manufacturing processes account for 63–97% of supply chain carbon footprint when air freight transport is not used. When air freight transport is used for heavier components, transportation-related energy consumption accounts for 78–90% of supply chain carbon footprint. Similarly, from a social responsibility perspective, transportation-related activities account for 73–99% of supply chain injuries/illnesses, and days away from work when air freight transport is used. Manufacturing activities dominate the impacts on worker health when air freight transport is not used, leading to 59–99% of supply chain injuries/illnesses, and days away from work. These results reiterate that simultaneous consideration of environmental and social impacts of manufacturing and supply chain activities is needed to inform decision making in sustainable product manufacturing.
Simultaneous Consideration of Unit Manufacturing Processes and Supply Chain Activities for Reduction of Product Environmental and Social Impacts
Manuscript received January 18, 2016; final manuscript received August 14, 2016; published online September 6, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Moneer Helu.
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Alsaffar, A. J., Raoufi, K., Kim, K., Okudan Kremer, G. E., and Haapala, K. R. (September 6, 2016). "Simultaneous Consideration of Unit Manufacturing Processes and Supply Chain Activities for Reduction of Product Environmental and Social Impacts." ASME. J. Manuf. Sci. Eng. October 2016; 138(10): 101009. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4034481
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