Former Sec. of State Gen. Colin Powell may not be the first person you'd think of as a spokesperson for green; Ed Begley Jr. might be the more likely. Both were speakers at this week's Greenbuild event in Chicago. Powell was the keynote opening the event on Wednesday to a crowd of thousands at the Lakeside Center; Ed Begley addressed a smaller group at exhibitor Siemens' event on the eve of the official Greenbuild opening. (more...)
Posts Tagged ‘Green’
By: Dan Davis
"Worry about those things that you can control," my mom used to tell me. It's a great piece of advice, especially as we struggle to deal with the weak economic rebound and the political ruckus that passes for progress in Washington, D.C.
So what's a metal fabricator to worry about? I don't run a shop, but I think this advice is pretty good for anyone looking to gain control of a hectic life. (more...)
By: Dan Davis
FMA Communications Inc., the parent organization of this Web site and The FABRICATOR magazine, launched Green Manufacturer last month. The magazine covers manufacturing practices that are not only environmentally friendly, but also friendly to a company's overall performance, whether we are talking about bottom-line performance or increasing productivity. The magazine's editor, Kate Bachman, and the rest of the team behind the first issue should be congratulated. It looks great and reads better.
We thought the timing was perfect for such a magazine, as everyone tries to understand just where they fit into this green landscape. Whether you like it or not, the interest in "green" or "sustainable" manufacturing practices is part of a larger, legitimate movement.
Obviously, some manufacturers don't like it. (more...)
By: Tim Heston
It's the waiting that drags you down.
With our unemployment rate edging near 10 percent, many are waiting for companies to finally rehire. I can imagine them shaking their heads when they look at the Dow's ascent in recent weeks. Somebody's making money, but it certainly isn't them.
I'm not sure if welder Charles Salak has been paying attention to the Dow, but he's been busy with home improvement projects, occasionally working for a relative, repairing farm equipment. He isn't sitting still. In August he was laid off from Katana Summit, a wind tower manufacturer in Columbus, Neb. The company had no choice. Katana is awaiting the go-head for a 200-plus tower order. Wind energy is capital-intensive, so even today, with the promise of government help, it takes time to get the green light. If and when Katana finally gets the go-ahead for the order, Salak may get his job back. But for the past few weeks he's been waiting.
New York Times reporter David Segal visited Columbus and used Salak as the centerpiece for his article, which appeared yesterday on the front page of the business section. Segal also visited Behlen Manufacturing, a metal fabricator specializing in farm products, machine tools, and custom fabrication. Especially poignant was Segal's description of idle equipment on Behlen's plant floor. Tony Raimondos Jr., son of the company president, gave the reporter a tour of the expansive, 850,000-square-foot shop floor. (If you need space, Nebraska has it.) Riding with Raimondos on a golf cart, the reporter recalled:
"Every minute or two, you come upon a couple of guys who are galvanizing metal or fabricating tubing. Mostly, it's quiet.
"'We're hopeful,' says Tony Jr., driving past an unused ... steel punching machine. 'But it's really strange to see it look like this. The other day I looked through this window in a door to the factory floor, and it was dark. During second shift.'"
By: Tim Heston
The numbers popping up in the media recently draw an interesting, perhaps conflicted picture of the state of business in the U.S. Here's why.
First, there's unemployment. Like many, I expected the unemployment rate to continue its relentless rise past the symbolic 10 percent mark. It didn't. It fell a bit, to 9.4 percent. Dig a little deeper into the government's official release, though, and you'll find that 14,000 people in the fabricated metal products sector lost their jobs. Machinery-makers shed 15,000. And manufacturing overall shed 2 million jobs since this recession began.
By: Vicki Bell
This blog post is rooted in a discussion my husband and I had yesterday regarding a news item I ran across about a 'green' race car that runs on vegetable oil and waste chocolate. I get vegetable oil, but where on earth does waste chocolate come from? Godiva, Ghirardelli, Hershey, Fannie May, and other chocolate candy companies? An admitted chocoholic, I don"t understand waste chocolate; waist chocolate makes far more sense to me.
After talking about what a shame it is to use chocolate as fuel, we began talking about 'green' automotive initiatives in general. My husband's comments, courtesy of Bill Nye, the Science Guy, had me googling faster than an SSC Ultimate Aero.