Lean & Green

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Driving out waste in processes using Lean Six Sigma methods results in reducing wasted material & energy consumption and emissions.  This is becoming an increasingly important area of focus for organisations as we tackle the complex issues of sustainability.  Many leading organisations have used their continuous improvement programs to achieve significant gains in energy usage, emissions reduction and recycling.  These benefits flow to the triple bottom line of profits, people and planet.


US Environmental Protection Authority – the EPA has recognised that Lean thinking and techniques can be an enabler of environmental improvements. This website provides a lot of useful information including the two toolkits below.

The Lean and Environment Toolkit (3.2mb)

The Lean and Energy Toolkit (2.7mb)

Muda, Service & Flow (0.1mb) – a chapter from the book Natural Capitalism which explores how we can transition to a sustainable future.

How GE’s ‘Treasure Hunts’ discovered more than $US110M in energy savings – an article discussing GE’s kaizen approach to finding energy savings.

The Kaizen Workshop (2.3mb) – an article by Carlos Venegas showing how lean improvements result in environmental benefits.

Lean to Green: Interface Inc (0.3mb) – a case study from AME magazine.

Lean & Green (1 mb) – a short article by Prof Peter Hines on the link between Lean and Green.

Creating a Green Value Stream (1.8mb) – webinar showing 7 environmental wastes and a Value Stream Map identifying these wastes.