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What is Green Logistics? Why is it important to Trinidad and Tobago?

Logistics is the integrated management of all activities required to move products through the supply chain. For a typical product the supply chain extends from a raw material source through the production and distribution system to the point of consumption. The logistical activities comprise freight transport, storage, inventory management, material handling and all the related information processing. Greenness has become a code-word for a range of environmental concerns. It is employed to suggest compatibility with the environment, and thus, like logistics is something that is beneficial. When put together the two words suggest an environmentally-friendly and efficient transport and distribution system. Green Logistics is supply chain practices and strategies that reduce the environmental and energy footprint of goods distribution. It focuses on material handling, waste management, packaging and transport. By focusing on Green Logistics it allows for the sustainability. Sustainability has become a key priority in the design and operation of SC in the 21 st century. Sustainability allows the SC to better serve more environmentally conscious consumers while often improving SC performance. Sustainable development is defined as the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability for future generations to meet their own needs. There are four metrics used to measure sustainability in the SC. These include; energy consumption, water consumption, green house gas emission and waste generation. Social, environmental and economic demands force organizations to reduce the impact on the environment to develop sustainable transport and SC strategies. The factors driving an increased focus on sustainability can be divided into 3 categories; 1. Economic-Reducing risk and improving the financial performance of the SC. This activities include; growth opportunities, efficiency, employment, competitiveness and choice. 2. Social-Attracting customers who value sustainability. This includes increase health and safety working conditions. 3. Environmental-Making the world more sustainable. Involves managing waste, improving water and air quality, reducing noise and land use, preserve biodiversity and reduce agrochemical use. Environmental Factors The term environment typically refers to the natural environment: all of the living and non-living things that occur naturally on Earth, including the land, water, plants, animals, etc. Improving environmental sustainability means reducing the ecological footprint of the supply chain. Of the three dimensions, the environmental aspect of supply chain management has been studied the most. Hadfield et al. (2002) identify more than 50 environmental performance indicators by which suppliers can be

evaluated; Labuschagne et al. (2005a) also identify many factors related to environmental sustainability. We divide the environmental factors into six categories. (1) Air: Refers to the local impacts, such as carbon monoxide emissions, as well as global impacts, such as ozone depletion. (2) Water: Refers to both quality and quantity impacts, e.g., toxic discharges as well as total usage. (3) Land: Refers to how much land is used, how it is used, and the impacts of the use, such as soil pollution. (4) Materials: Refers to quantity of material used, the type of material used, and the potential effects of that material. (5) Minerals and energy: Refers to the use of non-renewable mineral and energy resources. (6) Institutions/Systems: Refers to the values, procedures, and systems both internal and external that relate to the environment. Table 1 provides example measures within each category. Social Factors. The social dimension of sustainability relates to the human capital of the supply chain. Improving sustainability with respect to the social dimension involves developing and maintaining business practices that are fair and favorable to the labor, communities, and regions touched by the supply chain. Social performance indicators are grouped into three categories. (1) Workplace: Refers to the internal human resources, i.e., those who work within the supply chain. (2) Community: Refers to all people outside of the supply chain, including those who are directly and indirectly affected by the chains performance. (3) Institutions/Systems: Refers to the internal and external systems, procedures, and values that relate to the social dimension. Appropriate measures and indicators within each category will depend on the industry, location, cultural norms, and so on. Some items, such as healthcare, span categories, since they have both internal and external implications. Economic Factors The economic dimension of the supply chain refers to the profits earned by the members of the chain as well as the economic benefits realized by the host nations, regions, and communities of those members. Thus, this dimension goes beyond the internal profit earned by a particular company, and some factors that fall under this category may not be easily measured in financial terms. Economic factors are sorted into four categories. (1) Economic performance: Refers to the ability of the firm to carry out its operations as well as the market value of the firm. (2)Financial health: Refers to well-being and long-term viability of the firm with respect to financial resources. (3) Market and structure: Refers to health of the market and the configuration of the supply chain. (4) Institutions/Systems: Refers to the internal and external systems, procedures, and values that relate to the economic dimension. Example measures and indicators are listed in Table 3. This discussion leads to the following proposition: Proposition 3: Supply chains that explicitly measure economic performance do not necessarily perform better with respect to the environmental and social dimensions of sustainability. This proposition is somewhat contradictory in light of the first two propositions. Why does measuring environmental performance, for example, improve economic performance but not vice versa? We conjecture that this result relates to the hierarchical nature of the measures. Put differently, firms already measure economic performance, but they do not (generally) measure environmental performance. The increased scrutiny that accompanies expanded measurements will reveal waste and other opportunities for improvement, thus enabling the firm to benefit economically.

The goal for every firm is to measure the elements of sustainability for each driver. These elements include; facilities, inventory, transportation, sourcing, information and pricing. Facilities are a significant user of energy and water and emitter of waste and green house gases and thus offer significant opportunities for profitable improvements. Once a firm measures the direct impact of each facility in terms of energy, water, emissions and waste, it should separate the improvement opportunities into those that generate positive cash flows and those that do not. For example, the company can then engage in activities such as using more efficient light bulbs or building natural light sources to cut energy consumption, also the use on improved technology to balance the peak load on energy across the entire facility. Production facilities have the opportunity to reuse heat energy generated and reduce water usage during its production process. Firms can divert from landfills and engage in recycling to produce revenue. This will result in decrease in operation cost and lowering level of green house gases and other waste. Inventory is the life cycle assessment can be used to assess the environmental impact associated with the products life from cradle to grave. The goal here should be to reduce or limit the harmful inventory and reuse the unused value in products when that is discarded. The damage may be in the form of harmful additives of in the form of valuable energy and materials that are lock in the landfill. The material and energy can be used to produce the product and lessen the potential harm to the environment. Companies should design products that when there useful life is over do not become useless waste but can be recycled to become food for plants and animals and soil or can return to industrial cycles to supply high quality raw materials for new products. Transport is another driver wherein firms are likely to find several positive cash flow opportunities. A SC design, innovation that lowers transport cost also tend to reduce emission and waste generated from transport. The improvement through increased aggregation, selection of the most efficient and energy economic transportation mode, a more efficient loading of transport vehicles, and an increase in there fuel efficiency cut both costs as well as environmental damage. Product design can also play a significant role in reducing transportation cost and emissions by reducing packaging and allowing greater density during transportation by designing products that can be shipped flat to achieve high volumes and weight density during transportation the company an lower cost and reduce emission and energy use. Another factor in achieving transport sustainability is for distribution centers to be centralized to in a particular geographic area to reduce travel distance. Sourcing for most firms the majority of energy and water use and waste and emission occurs in the extended SC. To have a positive impact on sustainability powerful players must look at the extended SC and work with their suppliers to improve performance. Failure to do so can be viewed as a potential source of risk that can cause considerable damage to the reputation and sales of the firm.

Verifying and tracking supplier performance with regard to sustainability continues to be a major challenge for most firms and since SC have become increasing global and fragmented. For example, firms can work with suppliers to find raw materials with reduced environmental impact. Land use. Information. Good information continues to be one of the biggest challenges in to improve the SC sustainability. The absence of standards for measurement and reporting has lead to claims of improvement that cannot be validated. Companies talk about working towards a common set of standards but are unlikely that such standard would emerge because incentives are not aligned across different firms. This poses a challenge both within firms and across SC when it comes to improve sustainability. Walmart for example implemented a web based score card that evaluating the packaging of each product such cube utilization and recycle content. This score card was used to measure and recognize improvement in packaging. Cost saving strategies pursued by sustainability is often at variance with environmental considerations. The benefits that are realized by the consumer ultimately impact the burdens and cost on the environment. Individuals are less willing to accept these costs and pressure is increasingly being put government and SC corporations to include greater environmental considerations in their activities without impacting on price. By communicating the impact of sustainability to the environment can help consumers make more informed choices and create a willingness to pay for a product that is produced and distributed by a SC in a more sustainable manner even though it may cost more. The national environmental policy of T&T was formulated so that the government is duty bound to ensure that there is a right balance between economic development and environmental conservation. In formulating this policy, the government focused on the sustainable management of the countrys environmental assesses. The environment generated both social and economic benefits for society through the supply of the following ecosystem services: natural resources, which are the basis for economic activities, food plant and animal product, energy and water and air purification. The policy also takes into account the relationship between environmental sustainability and human health. There has been an understanding that environmental factors such as water contamination, air pollution, hazardous waste and climate change are a root cause of death, diseases and disability. Prompting environmental enhancement in the form of reforestation coastal protection and wetland conservation can serve to protect the country during hurricane, reduce flooding, reduce wind damage and absorb green house gases. This policy will provide the basis for ensuing the environment is managed to protect human health and yield the optimum sustainable benefits for existing and future generation. Basic principles for trinidad: Respect and care for community life-education population

Corporate responsibility-impose fine and taxes Keep with in the countries carrying capacity-fertile soil for agriculture, land use of the constuctio industry, stabilize population growth, reduce poverty, waste minisation and recycling most be promoted as a way of life. Empower communities to care for there own envirionmetn-green fund Polluter pay principles-quarrying, littering