MRO Magazine

Bearing manufacturer continues to demonstrate environmental leadership

Ann Arbor, MI - NSK Americas (NSK) has released its 2013 sustainability achievements, demonstrating the company's ongoing commitment to environmental protection. The year's accomplishments show that NSK saved:

Ann Arbor, MI – NSK Americas (NSK) has released its 2013 sustainability achievements, demonstrating the company’s ongoing commitment to environmental protection. The year’s accomplishments show that NSK saved:

– 39,200 trees, equivalent to 485,688,000 sheets of newspaper

– 3,891,400 litres (1,028,000 US gallons) of oil, enough to heat 6,456 homes for a year

– 58,880,000 litres (15,556,000 US gallons) of water, enough to meet the daily needs of 207,413 residents in the US


– 201,762 litres (53,300 US gallons) of gasoline, enough to drive a mid-size car 2,401,785 km (1,492,400 miles)

– 52,938,000 kilowatt hours of electricity, enough to power 6,456 homes for a year

“NSK’s commitment to corporate social responsibility and our corporate environmental policy initiatives are producing meaningful results,” said Brian Lindsay, CEO. “The ongoing addition of new initiatives to complement our sustainability program continues to improve those results, year over year. Ultimately, that benefits the global environment and the health of the local communities in which we operate.”

As a contributing member of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) WasteWise program, NSK strives to meet a series of internal benchmarks which translate into sustainability numbers regarding how many trees, how much water, etc., the company has saved. The 2013 results for each benchmark represent improvements ranging from 20%-37.5% over the previous year.

In 2013, NSK’s environmental and safety portfolio was established as a stand-alone corporate operating department, headed by Susan Diehl, vice-president, legal and general counsel.

Marcia Fournier, environmental and chemical manager, and the company’s front-line green ambassador, is very proud of NSK’s sustainability achievements. “We continue to improve our waste management processes,” she said. NSK has a Master Agreement with Safety-Kleen, which not only ensures responsible waste management and disposal, but enables NSK to track any issue that may arise, and quickly mitigate environmental risk.

“In 2012, Safety-Kleen worked with us to help us better manage our mop water at our Bennington, VT, site, and now we are recycling that water in-house. The result is cleaner floors, which protect our customers’ products, and less waste, which reduces both environmental impact and cost,” Fournier added.

In October 2013, the company partnered with Tetra Tech, and improved its response time to customer requests for product composition data by 50%.

Earth Day is an annual opportunity to highlight NSK’s dedication to environmental leadership, and this year was no exception. A company-wide colouring contest to design an Earth Day T-shirt was held for the children and grandchildren of employees; 3,100 shirts sporting the winning drawings were distributed to NSK staff to celebrate the annual event.

Bearing production

NSK continues to advance its bearing production processes by reducing scrap waste, increasing energy efficiency and reducing the use of harmful chemicals. Steel and metal recycling is in place in all US sites, and a number of sites began recycling cardboard and plastic in the past 12 months.

All seven NSK US manufacturing facilities are ISO 14001 third-party registered, and the company is concurrently working toward registration at its headquarters in Ann Arbor, MI, and its Silao, Mexico manufacturing facility. Training for Lead Auditors is scheduled for July 2014.

NSK Canada is part of this program for its three facilities in Canada and its initiatives are included in the NSK Americas report.

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Children of NSK employees designed a T-shirt to commemorate NSK’s environmental initiatives.