Within the United Kingdom a significant portion of the energy consumed each year is done so through industry. It is therefore desirable to take measures that reduce this consumption. A process common to all manufacturing sectors is that of packaging, and this research focused on identifying, quantifying and reducing the environmental impact of one such system. It finally took the form of an abridged life cycle assessment focusing on the manufacturing and assembly stage of a packaging systems life. Two separate studies were conducted to evaluate the performance of specific tools for such environmental studies. Where, the total embodied energy and carbon of each sub-assembly of the systems was calculated and their contribution to the whole machine established. These were further broken down into material production and machine processes in order to establish where the major impacts were and potential areas for redesign. Both approaches were found to be resource hungry in their application, an output that may restrict their application in the type of company that operate in this domain. A surprising finding was that producing a design with lower environmental impact could be less expensive.
Matthews, J., Parr, C., Araoye, O., & McManus, M. (2014). Environmental auditing of a packaging system for redesign: A case study exploration. https://doi.org/10.7763/JOCET.2014.V2.138