Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 12

injection moulding
Harbec and Arburg
find sustainability is
just good business
nifying glass could burn wood.
Bechtold, a toolmaker by
trade, founded Harbec as a
general-purpose machine shop
in 1977. Over the years, the business
has evolved to the point
where, now, about 60% of its
business is plastics injection
moulding. They still operate
47 CNC machining centres
and 3-axis to 7-axis milling
machines, but they now also
have 36 injection-moulding machines
including 5 energy-efficient
Allrounders from Arburg.
Key markets include medical,
aerospace, defence and security,
high-end industrial components
and high-performance
electromagnetic components.
They mould over 350 different
resin compounds making such
products as precision lenses,
medical testing devices, precision
automotive vent disks, microfluidic
elements, etc.
Wind energy works
Harbec, Inc., an Ontario, NY, contract manufacturer of tight
tolerance, precision injection-moulded parts and assemblies,
machined metal components and tooling, has found it has a lot
in common with Arburg, the German manufacturer of injection
moulding machines, whose U.S. headquarters are in Rocky
Hill, CT. , and regional Technology Centres are located in Elgin,
IL and Irvine, CA.
T
12
hat applies not only
to plastics processing
but also to environmental
sustainability,
a key business priority for both
companies. Harbec, which has
been carbon-neutral since 2013
and water neutral since 2015
and plans to be zero waste to
landfill by 2022, could be a
model for how a manufacturer
can operate sustainably and
profitably. And Arburg, under
its " arburgGREENworld " programme,
aims to continuously
increase production efficiency
in all areas of plastics processing,
to reduce its carbon footprint
over the long term, to find
solutions for circular economy,
August/September 2021
and to support their customer
in processing recyclates and
bioplastics.
For Bob Bechtold, President
of Harbec, it all started a long
time ago when, as a child, he
says he was fascinated by the
forces of nature... how the wind
could lift a kite into the air or how
sunlight passing through a magA
different approach
Bechtold and his employees
take a different view of sustainability
than many other businesses,
particularly American
companies. Twenty years ago,
when he proposed ideas that
would aggressively move Harbec
in the direction of sustainability,
Bechtold encountered
a lot of resistance. Bankers
refused to help fund his solar,
wind and clean energy projects.
And, while other plastics
processors agreed that environmental
responsibility was a
worthy pursuit, the prevailing
view was that the kind of projects
Bechtold proposed were
too costly or would compromise
business profitability.
That is when Bechtold
changed his approach. " I took
six months, " he says, " and I
put together a case that never
mentioned the environment. I
proposed the exact same projects,
but I only talked about
numbers... about economic opportunities.
And this time, I was
successful. I made sustainability
a part of my business model
and it's lucrative. It greatly helps
our company to control our bottom
line and makes positive
impact. That's the part that resonates
with people. "
The effort began in earnest in
2000-2001 when Harbec began
installing gas-powered combined
heat and power (CHP)

Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021

Contents
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - Cover1
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - Cover2
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - Contents
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 4
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 5
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 6
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 7
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 8
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 9
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 10
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 11
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 12
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 13
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 14
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 15
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 16
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 17
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 18
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 19
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 20
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 21
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 22
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 23
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 24
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 25
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 26
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 27
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 28
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 29
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 30
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 31
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 32
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 33
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - 34
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - Cover3
Sustainable Plastics - August/September 2021 - Cover4
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