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What is a sustainable development partnership, and what does it have to do with manufacturing?

A sustainable development partnership, as it is defined by the U.S. Government's Sustainable Development Partnerships Web Site, is intended to "plan and implement voluntary partnerships that promote economic growth, social development and environmental stewardship."The U.S. is partnering with other countries in an effort to create and implement strategies that will meet the goals of the partnership both at home and abroad.Just a few of the areas where these strategies are being implemented include:

- Poverty reduction
- Universal primary education
- Access to clean water and sanitation services
- Access to energy services
- Reducing the spread of infectious diseases
- Reducing hunger and promoting agricultural and rural development
- Conservation and environmental stewardship
- Protecting marine and freshwater resources.

Local businesses and corporations are encouraged to participate in a partnership such as this one in an effort to promote development that can provide sustenance to people in need all over the world.When resources of governments, international organizations, civil society, academia, and the private sector are joined together, huge developmental strides can be made.Currently, there are more than three hundred partnerships that are operating under the Global Development Alliance and more information about this alliance and other partnership efforts can be found by visiting the UN's Commission on Sustainable Development website at

What does a sustainable development partnership have to do with manufacturing?

In 2006 U.S. manufacturing plants were recognized for their strides in energy efficiency.Seventeen manufacturing plants received the EPA's Energy Star award.This award is given in recognition of their energy-efficient operations.It was estimated that their efforts prevented approximately 3 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions than that previous year. In the process of lowering pollution, rates of energy consumption were also lowered.This meant that there was a natural reduction in operating costs as well.

The manufacturing sector is playing their part in a sustainable development partnership by supporting the better outlook for the future of the environment.Preserving resources and energy and at the same time reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the American economy sees growth.

Energy efficiency is particularly important to the manufacturing sector of the market because about one-third of all energy used in the United States is used by the manufacturing process.A small percentage of the companies taking part in this process of energy efficiency include cement production, wet corn milling, and auto assembly.The participating businesses are now setting the standard for their comrades to follow in suit and to improve energy efficiency across the board of every manufacturing industry.This is just the beginning of the development of challenging energy improvement goals and plans.In fact the EPA is currently working with 10 industries to advance innovative corporate energy management tools in an effort to establish the leadership forces that will drive the entire manufacturing sector of the market towards investing a little to benefit a great deal from energy efficient prosperity.

Manufacturers certainly have an opportunity with their progress in the field of energy efficiency to fulfill the purpose of a sustainable development partnership, which again is to plan and implement voluntary partnerships that promote economic growth, social development and environmental stewardship.Environmental stewardship is definitely being taken as a serious topic especially among the award receiving seventeen manufacturing plants. As a result other factors and advantages of the partnership, economic growth for example, is also being made manifest.Responsibility in regards to the environment also has long term financial rewards.In addition the prosperity of future generations is preserved as these manufacturers see lowering greenhouse gas emissions as an investment into the future of manufacturing.

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