Focus on Reliability…and Start Hitting Your ESG Targets

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Let’s talk about ESG. Three letters that, depending on your outlook, might represent a looming threat to your plant’s very existence and the way you operate. 

Whatever you might feel about it, ESG – short for Environmental, Social and Governance – is anything but a passing fad. 

Chances are, you’ve heard about carbon reduction requirements and energy use efficiency. 

Maybe you’ve been pulled into a meeting with leadership about how your facility is going to meet ESG targets, and now you’ve been tasked with making it happen. At the same time, though, you’re still expected to meet production targets. 


How do you make ESG performance happen?

The good news is that you don’t need to become a carbon trading expert overnight or replace every piece of machinery in your factory. To get your ESG efforts kick-started and moving in the right direction, focus first on maintenance and reliability. 

Keep in mind: This doesn’t have to be about making sweeping changes, but getting the smaller, everyday things operating well, which, when taken together – can have a positive overall impact. 

Here’s an example: If you have a poorly maintained pump in your facility, it may be consuming a lot of energy, not performing well, and compromising productivity. 

If you take a highly reliable approach to that pump, and it’s being properly maintained, you’re not only using less electricity, but you’re optimizing the pump’s long-term lifespan. 

Rather than eking out two years (or less) with poor maintenance, you can now expect to get closer to 10 years with fewer costly disruptions, downtime and waste. 

Consider this as well: The carbon footprint involved in making that pump doesn’t have to be replicated several times over due to it not failing prematurely. 

If you treat your assets well and lower their overall life cycle cost, you’re also boosting your ESG efforts. 

Healthy plant, healthier environment. 


How will you know you’ve made progress? Measure, measure, measure.

This might be a bit of an investment – take advantage of the advancements digital tools and monitoring offers. You need to get an accurate read of your current performance in order to really understand what you’re able to achieve. If you don’t know where you started, how can you claim improvement? 

Track your maintenance, repairs and part replacements for each machine. As you adjust your maintenance, you should see a reduction in reactive repairs and replacements, as well as parts ordered. 


Getting it right the first time around.

This story doesn’t begin and end with improving asset management and reliability. 

If you’re expanding, or replacing a legacy plant with a new build, there’s plenty you can do at that plant’s commissioning and design phase. 

Building high levels of reliability and asset risk management into your new plant’s design allows you to minimize the need for reworking and overhauling over its life cycle – which results in a much lower overall carbon footprint. Good planning and scheduling processes can also help reduce a tremendous amount of waste. 

One example is “operational readiness,” where you look at every functional area – from engineering through to accounting and HR, and then identify, plan and prioritize the activities that must be completed to ensure the smoothest possible operations from day one. 

Other practices – like incorporating digital technologies that monitor machine performance, usage and MRO consumption – can help you more readily identify where improvements can be made. 


Learn from the best. 

Right now, there’s no “hard and fast” standard around ESG, as you – and everyone else – are trying to figure out how to incorporate ESG into your day-to-day operations.  

However, there are dozens of examples where carbon-heavy businesses have taken on the challenge, adjusted and, ultimately, found ways to meet their ESG goals.

For instance – household insulation producers Owens Corning set out almost two decades ago to reduce their carbon footprint by refining their manufacturing and production processes to use far less energy. What’s more – they have also been educating the public about the greenhouse gas-reducing benefits of quality household insulation. 


Walk the talk.

Remember: ESG and reliability don’t (and shouldn’t) exist in their own separate bubbles. By making concrete efforts to improve maintenance and reliability, your plant will consume less resources, run more efficiently and be held up as a true example of ESG in action. 

Let’s talk about how we can help. Fill out the contact form in the menu above; we’ll be in touch!