Warehouse association launches sustainability program

by MM&D staff

DES PLAINES, IL: The International Warehouse Logistics Association (IWLA) has begun a sustainable logistics initiative for North American warehouse operations called the Sustainable Logistics Initiative (SLI).

“The warehouse-based logistics industry is taking an innovative approach toward planet, people and profits,” said Linda Hothem, IWLA chairperson and CEO of Pacific American Group. “Many IWLA members have already adopted the practices needed to demonstrate their continuous improvement process in supply chain sustainability, and others will learn quickly how to become part of the program—and a more sustainable solution—through participation in SLI. The data collected through SLI will inform our industry and our customers on the best and most efficient means to improve sustainable warehouse-logistics practices.”

SLI participants report and engage in an objective measurement process, the IWLA said. Continuous improvement of each facility is the benchmark and the process is verified by The Sustainable Supply Chain Foundation. Organizations will self report and have data verified in many areas:

  • Environmental responsibilities: sustainability’s green aspects such as electrical use, fuel and water consumption and recycling;
  • Social  responsibilities: including safety and community activity measurements; and
  • Profit responsibilities: sustainability will generate cost savings through increased efficiencies and improved operational excellence.

Facilities will get a sustainable logistics initiative certificate for participating, said the IWLA. As their metrics improve, facilities can achieve silver, gold or platinum status.

“The process is inexpensive, user friendly and data input is easy to complete,” said IWLA president and CEO Joel Anderson. Members who participate in the program can be assured their data will be handled with confidentiality, Anderson said. The SLI program is available only to member companies of the International Warehouse Logistics Association.