Publish on: 19 Oct 2015
Increased environment pressure and awareness now require industries to meet tighter environmental standards and in many cases such requirements cannot be met by end of pipe treatment of wastes. Nowadays there is a paradigm shift from pollution control (End of Pipe thinking) to pollution prevention strategies. One such attempt at pollution prevention rather than pollution control is the Green Productivity programme which takes into consideration the whole value stream during production, identifies the different stages and circumstances through which waste is generated and appropriate solutions are subsequently applied to stop generating waste at source in an attempt to reduce or eliminate air, water, and land pollution in an efficient and sustainable manner.
Green Productivity is not just an idea; it is a proven concept that has helped companies improves their bottom line while at the same time respecting all the environmental legislations without adding additional cost to production. It not only addresses environmental compliance but goes a step further to review at source reduction, health and safety concerns and risk reduction. In this perspective, Green Productivity is a holistic environmental management strategy.
Companies in western countries (US, European countries) have been able to appropriate the concept of pollution prevention and environmental management as cornerstones of a strategy to achieve increased efficiency. How far companies in Mauritius are embarking on pollution prevention strategies is still to be determined. It is even more difficult to get small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to integrate environmental issues into their management practices.
It is mandatory that companies approach pollution management in an anticipatory or proactive manner. Only then will they earn benefits such as improved environmental performance, enhanced productivity and cost‐effectiveness.
Companies in Mauritius may have to rely on the initiatives, knowledge and capacities of other actors. One of the initiatives launched is the green productivity programme initiated by the National Productivity and Competitiveness Council whereby support and training were provided to companies willing to green their processes. However, much still needs to be done to promote pollution prevention strategies. How to promote pollution prevention strategies and induce companies in Mauritius to move towards a cleaner production? How to induce a willingness to adopt proactive environment practices in companies? Who are the other actors that can help these companies move from pollution control to pollution prevention strategies? What kind of support would companies require to move them along this path?