Sustainable Manufacturing

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Business Case for Sustainable Manufacturing Presentation

Business Case for Sustainable Manufacturing

A growing number of companies are treating “sustainability” as an important objective in their strategy and operations to increase growth and global competitiveness. This trend has reached well beyond the small niche of those who traditionally positioned themselves as “green,” and now includes many prominent businesses across many different industry sectors. In many cases, these efforts are having significant results.

Sustainable manufacturing helps companies to save money, enhance competitiveness, and reduce environmental, health, and safety impacts. According to a recent survey, two-thirds of nearly 3,000 company officials surveyed responded that “sustainability was critically important to being competitive in today’s marketplace."[ 1 ] In addition, as an indication of company sustainability initiatives and stakeholder interest, 93 of the S&P 100 companies reported sustainability information on their websites in 2008.[ 2 ]


  • Lower Resource and Production Costs
  • Lower Regulatory Compliance Costs
  • Improved Sales and Brand Recognition
  • Greater Access to Financing and Capital
  • Easier Employee Hiring and Retention

There a number of reasons why companies are pursuing sustainability:

Companies engaged in sustainability efforts include those of all sizes, ages, and sectors. Companies move forward along the path to sustainability by improving performance and reducing their resource footprint. Ways that companies progress further on the path to sustainability include:

To learn more about the business case for sustainable manufacturing, view the Department of Commerce’s detailed presentation on the Business Case for Sustainable Manufacturing. This presentation describes the benefits of sustainable manufacturing as well as some of the challenges, and provides numerous examples.


  1. Kiron, et al., Sustainability Nears a Tipping Point, MIT Sloan Management Review, Vol. 53, No. 2, Winter 2012, pp. 69-74. [back to text]
  2. Mohan, A., S&P companies reporting on sustainability jumps by more than 33%, report shows,, January 6, 2010. [back to text]