We’ve long been cognizant of an increasing need to think and act in a more environmentally sustainable manner. At the forefront of conversations are reducing waste, eating cleaner and even re-purposing buildings and their use. A recent article in the Financial Times for example, explored the possibility of revitalising city centre properties and even old shopping centres into retirement homes, in a bid to better integrate our aging population at the heart of activity and commerce.
As part of sweeping reforms to the existing planning system, the government has laid out ambitious plans to relax rules around the conversion of commercial buildings into residential use. Changes in consumer shopping habits combined with the aftermath of the Coronavirus crisis, has resulted in a consistent decline in footfall in both our city centres and retail outlets. In response, Mark Robinson, chair of the High Streets Task Force stated that “we’re bringing forward proposals to change the use of a shopping centre on the south coast, which includes adding 56 later-living flats. For years, we’ve been packaging up old people and putting them on the edge of cities. Why shouldn’t they be in town centres?”
Why shouldn’t they indeed? Plans to re-purpose old buildings is not only an environmentally conscious act, but also preserves decades of architecture for future generations. These ideas are immediate in their effect, creating job opportunities and answering cries to the housing crisis with ingenuity and ambition.
But should acts like this look to become the norm over the exceptional? And if they do, what is the true impact on our consumption habits?
Is recycling the true answer?
An article by One Green Planet argues that “recycling has been over-praised over the years. While it is great that we have found ways to break down our waste and create and something new (or the same thing) with recycled materials, it still requires a lot of energy. What’s more, if we simply recycle everything, we are likely using new resources each time we buy that item again. In other words, it’s better than sending things to the landfill, but recycling should hardly be our first thought on helping the environment.”
What is often overlooked with recycling is the energy intensive nature of it. Waste has to be heated, melted and reconstituted into something new. “There is a lot of embodied energy lost every time we recycle rather than re-use items.”
The answer to our question is in essence rather simple if we consider the reason behind our excessive purchases. Over the years it has become alarmingly commonplace to buy cheap and replace often, leading to both reckless investment and excessive waste.
Quality over quantity
If we operated with an understanding that every tooling purchase we make has to last, we are instinctively inclined to invest in quality items that we know will withstand the toughest of manufacturing environments. By becoming more consciously responsible of the waste we create, we are far more likely to prompt encouraging behaviour that seeks to actively reduce consumption.
Investment in quality tooling is only part of the answer however, as equal investment in comprehensive service solutions can help to further heighten and lengthen the lifespan of a tooling asset to operate at both maximised and optimised levels.
The Abbey Solution
At Abbey Industrial Solutions, we work closely with a multitude of manufacturing businesses to intimately understand tooling requirements before offering considered solutions to suit individual requirements and budgets. At Abbey, we understand that multiple factors will influence the purchase of a tooling suite or singular asset and that is why we maintain supplier relationships with several leading tooling manufacturers, allowing us to offer the best solution to your business needs.
At Abbey, we also offer a comprehensive selection of servicing solutions designed to heighten and lengthen the lifespan of your tooling assets, helping you to both maximise and optimise your investments. Whether you choose to execute a basic maintenance and health check service, or proactively implement a complete planned preventative maintenance programme, at Abbey Industrial Solutions our manufacturer trained engineering team are on hand to provide you with impartial advice and exemplary service on all your tooling requirements.
Abbey reserve a vast array of spare parts to enable an efficient lead time on your tool repair. As an authorised warranty and repair centre for leading tooling brands, we can provide warranty and test certificates on tools serviced. Abbey Industrial Solutions are accredited service partners covering a variety of tool types from rough grinding to sophisticated drilling and fastening from many major manufacturers including Cleco, Sturtevant Richmont, Ingersoll Rand, Mountz, Desoutter, Bosch, Darg, ATA, Dynabrade and Fein.
To ensure your tools meet all necessary safety regulations and legislation, Abbey can provide periodic assessment and testing of tools across vibration, torque, speed, PAT alongside the provision of overall tool safety. As all work and repairs are meticulously recorded in Abbey’s tooling management systems, we can not only conduct full audits but also issue timely reminders on renewals.
To find out more about our comprehensive sales and service offer that can help you make more considered and environmentally conscious investments, contact the team today.
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