The A to Z of minimalismWhen developing new products, the Hager Group systematically focuses on ecological design. This includes carefully examining the complete life cycle of the future product in terms of procuring raw materials, the manufacturing process, transport, the use of the product itself right through to recycling or disposal. When making a ‘Life Cycle Assessment’, the environmental effects of each product phase are taken into account and recorded. If they are too high, we go one better by changing the product or by improving the production process.
A design philosophy with many architectsBecause eco design embraces the complete product life cycle, a number of departments participate in the process including research and development, classical product design, manufacturing as well as marketing, sales and project management. As part of a bigger picture, the following environmental aspects are then analysed and evaluated:
- resource consumption accounting reviews environmentally relevant use of energy, raw materials, water and land (e.g. development area for production facilities)
- emissions reaching the air, water and the ground which are relevant to human health and the environment
- waste, especially dangerous waste materials as defined by environmental laws
- further environmental aspects such as noise pollution and vibrations that could have negative impacts on employees or local residents.
Tune into Hager – tune out of stressing the environmentHager’s new miniature circuit breaker is a current example of successful eco design. In spite of its extremely compact build, the raw material content has been reduced by a further 20%. The advantages speak for themselves – less energy is used during production, less transport weight and less disposal costs are incurred at the end of the product lifecycle.
20% less product material
- saves 4,500 tons of natural resources a year (approximately 150 truck loads)
- saves 300,000 tons of CO2 emissions a year
- saves the amount of energy in ten years that a 100 megawatt power plant would produce in one year.