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We are in the process of revitalizing and restarting the Light Green Machine Institute, a 501c3 educational institute we created back around 2008.
The Light Green Machine Institute's mission statement is "Holistically reducing the environmental impact of pulp and paper processing."
What does this mean? LGMI (the Light Green Machine Institute) focuses on the orphaned parts of the capital and operating budgets of a pulp and paper facility. Years ago, for instance, we started by promoting steel dryer cans. At the time, there was only one company in the world who had made steel dryer cans. Now they are being offered by the major suppliers.
There are many other issues that fall in our area of interest. Most of these are issues that are not financially interesting to any particular supplier, operating company or educational institution but in total have the potential to make a great impact on existing and greenfield assets. LGMI claims these areas and resolves to do something about them in a timely manner.
For instance, in greenfield installations, how does one optimize speed vs. width in sizing a machine? When thoroughly examined, this is a very complex issue indeed. LGMI has been working on it for three years.
What are the optimum materials of construction for process systems (piping, valves, tankage) for all the systems in a pulp and paper mill? There is a lot of money wasted here with incorrect selections.
For anyone company to pool the intellectual resources and experiences to answer these and similar questions, then memorialize the results in a standard fashion, is simply beyond their practical reach. However, together, with a little bit of effort from many, we can improve all our mills.
Some may think such an effort will destroy their competitive advantage. If that is your thinking, let me ask you this...have you produced your own welding standards, pressure vessel standards, or metallurgical recipes for the materials of construction? Of course, you haven't. It is no different here. In these matters, we are not competitors amongst ourselves.
A steering team has been working on putting together a board of directors. This team consists of:
Evan Erickson (Voith)
Sal Sciarrino (retired Controller, Greenpac Mill and retired President, Cascades USA)
Georg Handl (previously with Andritz)
Jim Thompson (me)
So far, interest has been expressed by personnel from
Paul Mueller Company
Georgia Pacific manager (retired)
Western Michigan University
We plan on an informational video conference by late November/early December to further discuss LGMI with interested parties. If you would like to join in, drop me a line with "LGMI Board" in the subject line.
Like all we do, safety will be uppermost in our minds as we develop the culture of LGMI and inculcate it in practices, training and standards.
Be safe and we will talk next week.
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