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Banning Plastic Bags May Be Bad Science

October 14, 2014 | by Chris Fox, Editor, Manufacturing.net | Comments

California Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed the nation's first statewide ban on single-use plastic shopping bags, following the lead of more than 100 California cities and counties. The fight between environmentalists and manufacturers is not over, as the data begins to show that plastic might not be as bad as you'd think...

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A Misused Metric Is Worse Than No Metric At All

October 23, 2014 1:00 am | by Dan Miklovic, LNS Research | Comments

LNS Research embodies the expression “you can’t control what you don’t measure.” With that, they’ve focused a significant part of their research on identifying the “Metrics That Matter.” And one of the most interesting topics to their Global Executive Council is benchmarking and understanding how to measure performance.

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Why Pennsylvania Should Not Enact A Severance Tax On Natural Gas

October 10, 2014 9:51 am | by Tracy Miller, Associate Professor of Economics, Grove City College | Comments

As the governor’s race heats up in Pennsylvania, one of the central issues is whether to enact a severance tax on natural gas. Democratic candidate Tom Wolf has emphasized that Pennsylvania is the only state without a severance tax and critics of the status quo argue that the state is giving away resources by not imposing the tax... 

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Chemicals mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity in the fourth quarter of 2013 saw a large uptick that helped level off 2013 overall deal volume and value, largely in part due to divestitures and mega deals – those valued at more than $1 billion, accordi

The Future Of Chemicals: Managing Complexity & Enabling Growth With Natural Supply Chains

October 7, 2014 1:00 am | by Rohit Singh, Principal, Strategy and Marc Waco, Partner, PwC US Chemicals Advisory Leader | Comments

In an increasingly challenging climate, chemical companies are facing shifting market forces and heterogeneous customers. Many are focusing solely on all-out growth or cost-cutting strategies in an attempt to adjust course. But succeeding requires a more innovative strategy. Now more than ever, chemical companies should make the time and resource investments needed to develop new capabilities in natural supply chains.

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Talent Shortages? Blame Salary, Not Just Training

September 30, 2014 1:00 am | by Chris Fox, Editor, Manufacturing.Net | Comments

As the economy has turned around and employers have been seeking to invest in fresh blood, a consistent tone of unemployable youth has been ringing from the manufacturing and engineering ranks. The skills gap is a growing problem as baby boomers are retiring and green workers are attempting to enter the workforce. 

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America Loses Another Iconic Brand, Sort Of

September 24, 2014 4:19 pm | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing, Business Technology | Comments

It looks like foreign investors are taking one more slice of Americana pie. News broke this week that Pabst is being sold to a Russian company, which begs the question, “Can we still claim it as our own?”

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Machine Safety Labeling In The 21st Century

September 16, 2014 1:00 am | by Geoffrey Peckham, CEO of Clarion Safety Systems | Comments

If your company manufactures machinery that has potential hazards associated with its transportation, installation, use, maintenance and/or disposal, you most likely have a strong need to create effective product safety labels. And the stakes are too high for the job to be done incorrectly – people’s lives and your company’s financial well-being are on the line.

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5 Key Reasons To Keep Maintenance History

September 9, 2014 1:00 am | by Gena Lyon, Marketing Assistant for Eagle Technology, Inc. | Comments

Recording maintenance history accurately leads to failure prevention and heightens awareness about equipment maintenance. CMMS software will also narrow down performance issues to parts and elements of your equipment.      

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Why American Manufacturing Is Vital To Future Prosperity

September 2, 2014 1:00 am | by Hillary Schaub and Darrell M. West, Brookings | Comments

At the 3rdannual John White, Jr. Forum on Public Policy the topic was Regional Manufacturing Hubs in the US, and we heard from a number of different experts. As noted in a recent White House report, the manufacturing industry is growing, but there is still much work to be done.

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Avoiding Decision Fatigue In The Engineering Change Management Process

August 26, 2014 1:00 am | by Heatherly Bucher, Arena Solutions | Comments

In product design and manufacturing environments, we assume decisions are based on facts and technical details. But, perhaps not always. Sometimes, it could be the wrong time of day to make one more good decision.         

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A couple of weeks ago one of Chevron's fracking well pads exploded and caused a deadly fire in a small town in Pennsylvania. Since, the apology letters and coupons for free pizza have met with a great deal of internet scorn. Is there a "right" way to apol

Getting Big Brother's Priorities Straight

August 12, 2014 3:07 pm | by Nikita Ernst, Associate Editor | Comments

Regardless of your political leanings, it's hard to put a positive spin on the news that the government has failed to follow through with terror prevention inspections at high-risk chemical facilities. This revelation combined with recent EPA over-reaching calls into question what our government is really doing to protect American industry. 

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Seeing China’s manufacturing sector shrink is a trend that excites Americans, although it may not actually alleviate much of the pressure around an unemployment rate of 7.3 percent. The reality, according to many experts, is that the phenomenon is more on

EPA Regulations And American Manufacturing

August 9, 2014 1:00 am | by Tia Nowack, IMPO Magazine | Comments

The EPA, as well-intentioned as it may be, is often met with staunch opposition from the industrial sector and the political right. Backing the EPA, more frequently than not, are environmentalist and the left. But who’s right, and is there a clear winner? 

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Going Green: 3 Ways To Improve Sustainability In Your Warehouse

August 5, 2014 1:00 am | by Tom Reddon, Forklift Specialist, National Forklift Exchange @TomReddon | Comments

Looking to save money and go green in your warehouse? It's not only possible, it's the best way to go in today's world of gas-guzzling, energy-wasting operations. If you use forklifts in your material handling warehouse, you can boost your sustainability daily with just a few steps.

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A couple of weeks ago one of Chevron's fracking well pads exploded and caused a deadly fire in a small town in Pennsylvania. Since, the apology letters and coupons for free pizza have met with a great deal of internet scorn. Is there a "right" way to apol

Catching A Runaway Train

July 29, 2014 4:42 pm | by Nikita Ernst, Associate Editor | Comments

Does it feel like we've been plagued with train accidents this year? It seems like we get news of another train collision once a week. The latest incident brings into sharp focus an ongoing problem we face in continuing to use one of the oldest transportation technologies for moving volatile materials.

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Is ‘Low-Cost’ Manufacturing Headed To The U.S. Next?

July 22, 2014 1:00 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Comments

The U.S. is now considered the prime location for low-cost manufacturing, with Mexico a close second and China falling behind. It’s a far cry from the trends over the last few decades and because it’s a rather extraordinary claim, it deserves a little more examination.

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Is The Texas Fertilizer Explosion Doomed To Repeat Itself?

July 15, 2014 1:00 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, MBT | Comments

The small town of West, Texas recently marked the one year anniversary of a fertilizer plant explosion that killed 15 people and injured 200 others. Subsequent news on the accident went largely unnoticed, because it happened on April 17, two days after the Boston Marathon. But since the blast little has been done to ensure it won’t happen again.

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