From improved efficiency to more advanced fabrication possibilities, specialized 3-D printing sub-sectors are emerging that cater to an array of enterprise buyers with money to inject into the field. Machines can now produce materials with potential health applications, such as human cartilage, plus batteries, LEDs and motor components. But what is the environmental impact of 3-D printing?
In 2010, massive flooding in Pakistan profoundly affected the country and disrupted supply chains globally, spiking international prices for cotton, rice and wheat. This was only one in a string of weather disasters - including heat waves, hurricanes and wildfires - that have affected supply chains on a large scale in the past decade.
More than a dozen of the world's largest car makers have agreed on minimum human rights, environmental and business ethics standards for their global supply chains, according to the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) in Michigan and CSR Europe in Brussels, which today jointly announced the "unprecedented agreement."
Apple is facing fresh questions over alleged workers' rights violations and environmental mismanagement in its Chinese supply chain, following the publication of a major new report from the China Labor Watch (CLW) group.
In 2004, a group of forward-thinking fashion and athletic brands with restricted substances lists (RSL), featuring such major players as Adidas, C&A, Gap, Levi's, Marks & Spencer and Nike, formed an industry working group with the aim of reducing the use and impact of harmful substances in the apparel and footwear supply chain.