The program becomes mature (Phase III) when it starts to address the intrinsic wastes through more complex recycling and reuse activities, more fundamental changes to the process, changes in the raw material or catalysts, or reformulation of the product. Emphasis has now shifted to the process itself.
Because of the long payback required for some of these Phase III changes, they are best introduced as a new unit or process is being developed. Justifying fundamental changes to the process as part of the pollution-prevention program per se is particularly difficult—the first construction-cost estimate of process plants involving new technology is usually less than half of the final cost, with many projects experiencing even worse performance.
The project will progress in stages, beginning with a waste audit carried out by an audit team. The audit team consists of a waste audit expert, a sector specialist, a financial expert, an economist/ marketing expert, and an expert in product life-cycle assessments. The audit team also supports the project in its different stages.
The following seven outputs will be produced by the audit team9:
1. Availability of material balances for selected unit process operations (Table 1.1)
2. Obvious waste reduction measures identified and implementation initiated (improved housekeeping) (Table 1.2)
3. Long-term waste reduction options identified (emphasis minimization of hazardous waste) (Table 1.3)
4. Financial and environmental evaluation of waste reduction options (Table 1.4)
5. Development and implementation started on a plan to reduce wastes and increase production efficiency (Table 1.5)
6. Recommendations for equipment modifications and/or process changes to reduce wastes (Table 1.6)
7. Opportunities identified for product reformulation (Table 1.7)
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