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  • Journal of Cleaner Production 8 (2000) 375379www.cleanerproduction.net

    Implementation of cleaner production practices with the support ofa diploma course

    Asher Kiperstok *

    Department of Hydraulics and Sanitation, Federal University of Bahia, Rua Aristides Novis 02, Federacao, 40210-630, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

    Abstract

    This paper describes the initial proposal of a cleaner technologies network in the state of Bahia, in the northeast section of Brazil.This network intends to bring together industry, universities, and government to discuss the relationship between production andthe environment. Its main objective is to support a change in the way this relationship is nowadays perceived, in order to makepreventive practices a priority and improve eco-efficiency. Implementation of the network was preceded by a diploma course onenvironmental technologies and management directed at professionals in the workforce. The results of the course are helping tocreate an atmosphere that is beneficial for the start-up of the network. 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

    Keywords: Cleaner production; Networking; Clean technology; Training; Training for eco-efficiency

    1. Introduction

    If cleaner production practices so obviously makecommon sense, why should we take the time to developprogrammes to expand and support them? Why do theynot occur naturally in industry? Are they just an aca-demic preoccupation?

    These questions were raised during the birth ofTECLIM, a programme conceived in 1997 by theDepartment of Hydraulics and Sanitation and the Depart-ment of Chemical Engineering at the Federal Universityof Bahia, Brazil, to promote cleaner practices in indus-try. Initial contacts with representatives from the chemi-cal industry and industrial associations helped to clarifythe issues.

    At the outset of the programme, it became clear thatnone of the above questions have a single, simple yes-or-no answer, and that addressing these questions wouldrequire taking several factors into account. First, outsideenvironmental pressures have affected industry. The pre-dominant focus inside the facility limits of plants onincreasing production and profits now shares attentionwith growing societal concerns about protecting theenvironment. To address this tension, end-of-pipe meas-

    * Tel.: +55-71-2354436.E-mail address: asher@ufba.br (A. Kiperstok).

    0959-6526/00/$ - see front matter 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.PII: S0959- 65 26 (00)00 04 0- 8

    ures have flourished as the favored means of industryand governments for balancing interests.

    Second, recent industrialisation in many developingcountries has been encouraged by protective measuresadopted by their governments to gain greater economicindependence. These measures were designed to boostlocal enterprises and develop substitutes for importedgoods, thereby generating jobs at a local level. To fosterindustrialisation in the 60s and 70s, governments andprivate national interests formed alliances to createopportunities to attract foreign investors and technology.Huge investments in infrastructure were made, and rawmaterials were subsidized. In Brazil, for example, thisapproach was termed the economical miracle yetgenerated an external debt and dependence that contrib-uted to the countrys economic stagnation of the 80sand 90s. Under official protection, industry grew withfew demands for efficiency as long as it was able togenerate profits for shareholders. As a result of thisdevelopment model, high rates of inflation becameendemic in third world countries. Environmental con-straints were initially relaxed and then subsequentlyenforced, but governments subsidised industrys com-pliance costs.

    Third, in the 90s, globalisation forced industry tosearch for new patterns of production to survive undermore competitive circumstances. Environmental con-straints have grown more stringent, as standards have

  • 376 A. Kiperstok / Journal of Cleaner Production 8 (2000) 375379

    been exported from more developed and saturated mar-kets to the less developed world. Countries that havealready destroyed all their original ecosystems are put-ting pressure on those who still have some untouchedareas to preserve them. This kind of global sense of guiltmay change the present trend of biodiversity reduction.

    The questions initially posed by TECLIM were gradu-ally answered. To some professionals in industry, it wasobvious that pollution should be addressed at the sourcein order to avoid unnecessary consumption of rawmaterials and the additional costs of destroying unspentinputs. Those who recognised the need for a change inbehaviour saw TECLIMs initiative as an opportunity tofind other people who thought the same way as they did.Nevertheless, the vast majority of their colleagues stillreacted in an old-fashioned way by favoring pollutioncontrol. This response indicated that not all TECLIMparticipants perceived the new reality of the need for aprevention-based approach and that a change in estab-lished ways of thinking, not just individual attitudes, isrequired.

    2. TECLIM (Clean Technologies) programme

    The clean technology programme attempts to create anetwork linking industry, government, and universitiesto promote the use of clean technologies in local facili-ties. Institutions taking part in this programme includeuniversities and technical schools, industrial associ-ations, training and centres for technology, environmen-tal agencies as well as industrial and consulting firms,and industrial water and wastewater treatment firms.

    The programme is financially supported by the Brazil-ian Research Council, CNPq and the Research Co-oper-ative Network RECOPE funded by the FederalGovernment and the State Government of Bahia [2].

    The initial design for TECLIM included five work-groups, as indicated in Fig. 1. These workgroups addressthe following topics: 1) environmental management forthe transfer of cleaner technologies, 2) information sys-tems, 3) environmental optimisation of processes, 4)development of bio-indicators to assess the toxicity ofindustrial wastewater, and 5) education and training.These workgroups are meant as a starting basis for thedevelopment of future initiatives or co-operative pro-jects [2].

    The first workgroup seeks to study environmentalmanagement systems that are already in place in localfirms (all large companies). The objectives of this studyare to develop a methodology for the implementation ofcleaner production practices in large, medium and smallfirms, with or without previous EMS experience, and toidentify mechanisms to promote the integration betweenindustrial sectors to allow the use of residues of oneplant to be used as raw materials of another.

    The information system workgroup seeks theimplementation of an information framework to supportthe expansion of clean technologies. This frameworkattempts to facilitate the exchange of opinions and infor-mation between the network partners and the public atlarge. This system will provide the virtual space neededto allow the network partners to meet and carry out theiractivities. It will also support educational and trainingactivities and a database offering technical informationand summaries of successful experiences. The initialhomepage can be found at http://www.teclim.ufba.br

    The third workgroup is engaged in research into theenvironmental optimisation of processes. The researchaims to develop and apply mathematical programmingmethods to support the identification of cleaner industrialconfigurations. The workgroup also seeks cooperationbetween industry and the university to carry out researchinto the reduction of industrial effluent toxicity.

    The fourth workgroup, coordinated by UFBAs Insti-tute of Biology, seeks to develop bio-indicators to assessthe toxicity of industrial wastewater. By adapting bio-monitoring methods to the reality of local industry, theworkgroup intends to prioritise efforts for the segre-gation of industrial waste streams.

    Finally, the education and training workgroups objec-tive is to insert a pollution prevention approach intoengineering courses at UFBA and other local univer-sities. At the moment, the main initiative beingimplemented is the Diploma Course in EnvironmentalManagement and Technologies in Industry. An effort isalso being made to deliver this course using distancelearning techniques. The workgroup is also attemptingto make available recent information on pollution pre-vention and environmental technologies to professionalsalready positioned in the market place.

    3. The diploma course on environmentalmanagement and technologies in industry

    To initially spread the cleaner production conceptamong industry and government, the School of Engin-eering of the Federal University of Bahia and the Indus-trial Technology Centre (CETIND) of the NationalIndustrial Training Service worked together to put for-ward a diploma course on environmental managementand technologies. The idea was discussed in 1997 withprofessionals working in industry, and the first coursewas offered in March 1998 in the city of Salvador, Bah-ias capital. Due to the success of this first course, asecond course was offered in 1999.

    The Diploma Course on Environmental Managementand Technologies in Industry is a 550-hour course deliv-ered in the evenings to encourage the participation ofprofessionals working in industry. The eight-modulecourse, which runs over the course of 12 months,

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    Fig. 1. Proposal for TECLIMs structure [2].

    includes 340 class instruction hours and the writing ofa small research project with an estimated duration ofnot less than 210 hours over six months. (see Table 1).The course begins with a review of environmental man-agemen