Environmental Health and Safety
Protecting our social and physical environment is one of 3M’s core values. At 3M Guin, we achieve this through our commitment to proactive environmental management.
Managing Our Environmental Footprint
Environmental Health and Safety Management System
3M Guin’s EHS Management System promotes sound environmental management. It helps us to manage the environmental footprint of our operations, drive sustainable growth, and address the expectations of our stakeholders. These stakeholders include our employees, customers, regulators, environmental groups, and the communities surrounding our plant.
Our EHS Management System:
- Includes an integrated, holistic system that anticipates and addresses long-term issues and drives continuous improvement.
- Promotes a strategic planning process that integrates EHS issues into business planning.
- Includes a process for identifying issues, developing formal action plans, setting goals and measuring results.
3M pioneered the concept of pollution prevention with the creation of the pollution prevention pays (3P) program in 1975. The 3P program is based on the reality that pollution prevention is more environmentally effective, technically sound and economical than conventional pollution control equipment. Natural resources, energy and money are used to build conventional pollution controls, and more resources are consumed operating them. Conventional controls are temporary and do not eliminate the problem. 3P seeks to eliminate pollution at the source through product reformulation, process modification, equipment redesign, and the recycling and reuse of waste materials.
3P is a key element of 3M Guin’s environmental strategy. Since 1977, 3M Guin has completed 77 3P projects which prevented more than 10,200 tons of pollution and waste and saved more than 52 million dollars in the first year of the projects.
Pollution Control Equipment
Key Environmental Accomplishments
We are particularly proud of our work around the following:
3M has invested in the Guin facility to minimize air emissions. Solventless manufacturing processes have been introduced and computer-controlled thermal oxidizers capture and destroy any remaining pollutants. The result is a dramatic reduction in escaping hydrocarbons and the near elimination of related air emissions and odors.
In addition to reducing air emissions, 3M Guin has aggressive programs to reduce energy consumption and waste. New programs have been developed to recycle some raw materials within the plant and other manufacturing by-products are sold to outside industries for reuse in their processes.
3M Guin has obtained registration for conformance to ISO 14001. This is an international standard that specifies an environmental management system methodology. Registration for conformance to this standard demonstrates environmental excellence.
Additionally, 3M Guin is recognized by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency as a charter member of the National Environmental Performance Track and received the state’s Director’s Award for environmental performance from the Alabama Department of Environmental Management in 2003 and 2005.