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Letterkenny Depot looking green.

Letterkenny Army Depot, Pennsylvania, has turned its Lean manufacturing processes green. Lean Six Sigma initiatives have greatly improved pollution prevention efforts, reduced waste, and eliminated sources of pollution. In fiscal year 2007 alone, the depot eliminated chemical hazards, reduced waste, and improved working condition through over 60 rapid improvement events.

For example, employees previously used aircraft paint thinner to clean paint guns manually. By purchasing automated paint gun cleaning systems, the depot was able minimize employee exposure to unsafe chemicals. The installation also purchased a robotic spray process, which reduced the amount of hazardous material that employees came in contact with and the amount of harmful emissions produced from paints and paint thinners. Less product used overall equals less pollution.

Letterkenny has made other changes to improve its environmental performance. Instead of disposing of spent blast media 55-gallon drums, the depot is using super sacks and large roll-off containers. This has produced a 77-percent cost reduction in media hazardous waste disposal and saves the depot $500,000 annually in handling and disposal fees. An installation-wide recycling program has reduced the use of hazardous chemicals and diverted 58-percent of its solid waste from entering local landfills. The depot has also acquired dual-fuel vehicles that will run on unleaded gasoline or E85 ethanol.
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Copyright 2008 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:ALOG NEWS
Publication:Army Logistician
Date:Jul 1, 2008
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