Closing the gap – the Perception and Reality of Environmental and Waste Performance in Chinese and Polish Industry

John H.S. Craig, Mark Lemon

Abstract


This paper is derived from research into the management of industrial and process waste in twelve large manufacturing factories in China and Poland.  The research incorporates a unique methodology involving the expert benchmarking of environmental impacts, the use of questionnaires to elicit perceived environmental performance and, related to the same impacts, interviews across the complete management strata of each factory.
Sustainability is considered in the context of waste arising from production processes, including waste chemicals and scrap materials, and non-production wastes such as human ordure and detergents.  Process waste results in an unsustainable depletion of raw materials, while human and non-production waste results in the unsustainable and irresponsible use of the atmosphere, ground, groundwaters and rivers. 
The paper highlights the management of hazardous industrial waste as one area where an organizational fear and punishment culture is seen to restrict decisions to clearly defined job boundaries in such a way that flexible decision making is avoided and environmental management restricted to compliance rather than improvement and sustainable materiel use.

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Asian Social Science   ISSN 1911-2017 (Print)   ISSN 1911-2025 (Online)

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