Special Issue on Green and Lean Production
Masaru Nakano and Fumio Kojima
Hiyoshi, Kohoku-ku, Yokohama, Japan
Kariya, Aichi, Japan
Green production for a sustainable world has increased in importance as society has increased in its awareness of global warming, energy security, pollution, and the metals shortage. Lean production is a concept considered in successful manufacturing enterprises. Green and lean are often achieved together, such when both waste and energy consumption are reduced. On the other hand, the two are sometimes thought to be at odds, such as when the frequent transportation and small lot size often used in lean production consumes more energy usage than does conventional production. The integration of green and lean is familiar to those who study sustainability. The three bottom lines of sustainability are ecological, economic, and social sustainability. The ecological and economic dimensions have been discussed in the field of production systems. Proactive scenario simulation is required for the evaluation of sustainability as well as for the discussion of integrated criteria of sustainability.
This special issue covers both green and lean topics in the production field. It considers the challenges that need to be addressed so that researchers and practitioners may engage in scientific and practical discussions of these topics. Six contributions from academic institutes and six contributions from manufacturing companies have been accepted. This special issue is expected to encourage both academics and practitioners to discuss future collaboration. Most contributions deal with integrated green and lean issues. Some academic papers evaluate sustainability. Case studies as technical papers or development reports have been provided by industrial contributors. Methodologies range from survey to life cycle assessment to simulation to implementation. The applications range from machine development for green production to national technical policy for sustainable manufacturing.
All papers were refereed through careful peer reviews. We would like to express my sincere appreciation to the authors for their submissions and to the reviewers for their invaluable efforts, as together they made possible the publication of this special issue.