For what some people are saying is the first time, “greens”—persons interested in greater movement to sustainable resources—and “leans”—those interested in manufacturing improvements—are making a point of talking together and sharing ideas. In mid July, 110 greens and leans gathered in Boulder, CO, for the first Lean & Green Summit.
Dwayne Butcher, who helped organize the conference, said there were a number of take-away points. One was that most of the participants thought the discussions were worthwhile and that the leans and the greens should continue talking with one another, to formalize their dialog into some sort of consortium. Another was that they should organize kaizen events [based on Toyota’s rapid improvement practices] attempting to advance both industrial efficiencies and sustainable technologies at the same time. A third was to work out ways of developing performance measures for environmental improvement.