Chemical manufacturing resource efficiency

Chemical manufacturing environmental performance management


Whatever the size of your chemical manufacturing business, it has an impact on the environment. You can take practical steps to manage your environmental performance and save money at the same time. This can help you improve and maintain your reputation and win new business. It can help you communicate to your customers and staff that you comply with legislation, and that you care about your impact on the environment.

Develop a green chemistry programme

You may be able to improve your production processes or products by using green chemistry principles and applying clean technology.

Develop a clear step-by-step approach to applying green chemistry principles.

You may be able to embed these principles within an environmental management system (EMS).

Use an environmental management system

You can use an EMS to help you identify your business' environmental impacts and work out ways to reduce them, for example by using less energy and water, or producing less waste. This can help you to improve your overall efficiency as well as your environmental performance. Your EMS should be appropriate to the type and size of your operations.

For more information on how an EMS can help your business, see environmental management systems (EMS) - the basics.

Report on your environmental performance

Your business can benefit from improving, and reporting on, its environmental performance. For example, reporting will:

  • give you information about your current performance, and whether you are complying with legislation
  • identify where you could improve your activities, use resources more efficiently and save money
  • involve your staff and help increase their environmental awareness
  • demonstrate your commitment to improving your environmental performance to your staff, customers and the public

You should focus on how you manage your key environmental impacts, for example carbon emissions, water use and waste management, and document the progress you are making to minimise your impact.

To find out how you can measure and report on your business' environmental performance, see how to produce environmental reports for your business.

Manage your purchases

The goods and services you buy - such as raw materials for your production process, office supplies, and catering, cleaning and utility services - all have an impact on the environment.

You can reduce the environmental impact of the goods and services you buy and could reduce your costs by following green or sustainable procurement principles. Before making any purchase, think about whether you need to buy the product or service at all.

Reduce your resource use

Reducing your waste and use of raw materials can help you improve your environmental performance and make your production more efficient - see resource efficiency tips for chemical manufacturers.

Communicate with your staff

Encourage all your staff to work together to improve the business' environmental performance. The day-to-day actions of your staff can reduce your environmental impact significantly. Ask someone to volunteer at your site as an environmental champion.

Engage with senior management to gain their support for environmental policies.

Raise awareness among staff about your policies, and update them regularly on your progress and what you've achieved to help keep them engaged - see making the case for environmental improvements.