- April 12, 2017
- Posted by: Cheryl Rybka
- Category: Quality
“Team RECARO Makes Lasting Impression”
RECARO Aircraft Seating Americas, Inc. (RECARO), based at Fort Worth’s Alliance Airport, is one of the world’s leading aircraft seat suppliers and a responsible community member. RECARO has recently implemented an Environmental Management System (EMS), committing to environmental protection, compliance and improvement. The EMS supports RECARO’s global efforts in long-term sustainability and measures for continuous improvement of its environmental performance.
The EMS has been implemented according to the ISO 14001 standard requirements. It provides a framework that ensures sound environmental practices, performance, and improvement. This effort balances the company’s environmental management with its business requirements and helps promote a greater interaction between RECARO and external stakeholders.
RECARO recognized the business case of implementing an EMS to support its global customers that require ISO 14001. RECARO was already certified in the AS9100 Quality Management System and understood the efforts involved in a successful implementation and certification. An environmental team was established. The company then approached TMAC for assistance in understanding the standard. RECARO and TMAC worked together to establish the documentation and business processes required for the EMS.
RECARO and TMAC previously crossed paths when TMAC supported the company’s Lean Six Sigma training for over three years. RECARO’s Deputy EMS Representative, Alan Guinn, contacted TMAC for training on the ISO 14001 standard requirements.
Having helped businesses to implement this standard for over 15 years, TMAC had the hands-on experience that RECARO was seeking. In nine half-day workshops with RECARO’s environmental team on site, the participants and a trainer from TMAC walked the fence line of the defined scope. Together, they observed production and repair operations. As a first step of the implementation, an inventory was created that listed all aspects of the company’s processes with a potential impact on the environment. The team then identified and ranked all aspects that were significant. Based on this assessment, operation controls and training were developed and implemented to reduce any significant aspects and future impacts on the environment.
As a next step, reduction goals for energy usage and paper consumption were determined. In addition, the team set recycling goals for aerosol cans, metals, paper, cardboard, plastic, and glass wastes.
The EMS was then communicated to all employees and contractors performing work on site. Contractors now have to sign in when they begin work on site. They receive a brochure highlighting the EMS program and RECARO’s environmental policy including recycling and safety requirements. To manage environmental risks, contractors are required to take all waste materials with them after completing their work. In addition, they have to report and clean up any spills that occur while they work on site.
Finally, TMAC assisted RECARO with its internal auditor training to ensure that the EMS is maintained.
Once the system was implemented, RECARO was audited by an independent registrar on the ISO 14001 standard. With zero findings in the audit, RECARO received the certification. Expected quantitative impacts include:
- 20% reduction of solid waste costs as a result of increased recycling effort
- 15% annual savings in electricity
- An estimated $12,500 refund for utility sales tax exemption