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EMS Survey of Electroplating Equipment Suppliers

Ms. Guthrie:

You wrote:

Good day Listers,

(Sorry for any cross postings)

I am looking for assistance in creating a supplier EMS survey, as required
by our environmental policy of providing customers with environmentally
responsible  products and services (including suppliers).  I have all the
generic questions (ie do you have an EMS/ISO 14001 cert., P2 initiatives,
regulatory compliance...) but need assistance on issues specific to
suppliers of electroplating equipment.  Any help would be GREATLY

Thanks in advance,

Lisa Guthrie
Environmental Researcher

If I understand your question, you would like a list of specific questions
that, when answered by a supplier of electroplating equipment, would let one
determine if a given supplier is environmentally responsible.  Setting aside
the question of defining environmental responsibility, I can suggest
thinking of these equipment suppliers in three categories:

System assemblers
Metal fabricators
Plastics fabricators

The system assemblers will be no more or less "responsible" than their own
suppliers, since they in the majority of cases purchase pieces of equipment
(tanks; rectifiers; pumps; heaters; structural steel; pipes; etc.) and turn
them into plating lines or support equipment.  For those that do some

Metal fabricators are covered extremely well in the P2 literature as to
specific recommended practices, whether it be for welding or painting or
coating or other operations.  Just mooch an EPA checklist for this one.

Plastics fabricators have perhaps slightly less coverage, but checklists are
out there.  PVC is widely used, but I don't know if you will get anywhere
asking about non-PVC alternatives.  A good one here is fiberglass hoods and
other air handling equipment.  Separate checklist for that one. 

Good Luck!  Are you checking the chemistry suppliers, too?

Terry Foecke, Managing Partner
Materials Productivity LLC
1821 University Avenue, Suite S-219
St. Paul, MN   55104
(p) 651-603-8282
(f) 651-603-8286