Climate change is an issue that weighs on me often. So much is at stake, but for me, much of it comes down to wanting to pass down a healthy planet to future generations, including my three sons. I do what I can — eat less meat, wash my clothes in cold water, shovel instead of snow blowing, refrain from letting my car idle while waiting to pick up my kids (even on the coldest days) — but it never feels like enough.
Considering my angst, it was heartening to research this month’s cover story, “Waste not,” which looks at sustainability in manufacturing. The efforts of Northeast Wisconsin companies blew me away and gave me hope. For myriad reasons, incorporating sustainability as a manufacturer is no easy feat, and yet so many businesses have stepped up to the challenge and made it a priority. Georgia-Pacific, featured on the cover, earned the Energy Star award and has found innovative ways to reduce waste, Kohler Co. is working toward achieving net zero environmental impact by 2035, and Oshkosh Corp. is adding more returnable and reusable packaging. Check out the story beginning
on page 8.
Continuing with the theme of environmentalism, the Oshkosh Transload Terminal, which opened last June, provides companies another option for transporting goods. Shipping by rail is more environmentally friendly, cuts down on highway wear and tear, and circumvents truck driver shortages, says Jason Murphree, commercial director for Watco, the company that runs the terminal. Construction of a new 20,000-square-foot warehouse on the site is slated to begin later this year and be complete by fourth quarter. Read more about it in this month’s Global feature, starting on page 13.
Finally, New North manufacturers enjoyed quite a night at this year’s Wisconsin Manufacturer of the Year Awards. All four winners in the grand category — Mercury Marine, Robinson Metal, Winsert and J&R Machine — hail from Northeast Wisconsin. Read full coverage of the awards on page 23. We always knew we had something special going here. Congratulations to all the winners — keep up the fantastic work!