Sustainability 2009, 1(2), 234-253; doi:10.3390/su1020234
Article

Improving the Sustainability of Office Partition Manufacturing: Balancing Options for Reducing Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds

Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, 2000 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, Ontario, L1H 7K4, Canada
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 May 2009; Accepted: 31 May 2009 / Published: 3 June 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Forum for Sustainable Development)
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Abstract: Options are examined to improve the sustainability of office partition manufacturing by reducing volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions. Base VOC emissions for a typical plant are estimated using a mass balance approach. Pollution prevention and sustainability measures are assessed using realistic criteria and weightings. Sustainability has been considered from an industry perspective, considering factors like economics, environmental impact, quality, health and safety. Through a case study, it is demonstrated that several advantageous options are available for reducing VOC emissions in manufacturing office furniture partitions, and thereby enhancing the sustainability of that industrial operation. The measures deemed most viable include implementing several best management practices, not painting of non-visible parts, switching gluing processes, recycling solvent and modifying attachments. The results are intended to be balanced so as to improve their acceptability and adoptability by industry. It appears that it would be advantageous for manufacturers of office panels to evaluate the feasibility of these measures and to implement the most appropriate. The results are likely extendable to other operations in the wood furniture industry, and would improve their sustainability.
Keywords: sustainability; volatile organic compound; manufacturing; furniture; office partition; pollution; emissions

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MDPI and ACS Style

Luisser, F.S.; Rosen, M.A. Improving the Sustainability of Office Partition Manufacturing: Balancing Options for Reducing Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds. Sustainability 2009, 1, 234-253.

AMA Style

Luisser FS, Rosen MA. Improving the Sustainability of Office Partition Manufacturing: Balancing Options for Reducing Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds. Sustainability. 2009; 1(2):234-253.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Luisser, Frank S.; Rosen, Marc A. 2009. "Improving the Sustainability of Office Partition Manufacturing: Balancing Options for Reducing Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds." Sustainability 1, no. 2: 234-253.

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