Case study: Gough Plastics

Energy Manufacturing North Queensland

Gough Plastics aims to find the right balance between family and work and caring for the environment. Since joining the ecoBiz program in 2018, they have reduced their energy intensity by 22% and their waste intensity by 37%.

Key initiatives to manage energy

  • Renewable energy is sourced from a 30kW solar panel.
  • They have identified their most energy-intensive operations and increased efficiency of their process by:
    • improving air circulation and heating efficiency using internal fans
    • upgrading motors and compressors
    • improving the external fan system used for cooling plastics at the end of the process.
  • Energy-efficient LEDs are used in their workshop.
  • They have started to replace gas-powered machines with electric forklifts they charge over the weekend using solar energy.

Key initiatives to reduce waste

Gough Plastics has not increased the amount of waste they send to landfill despite a significant increase in productivity. This has been achieved by implementing measures to reuse and recycle cardboard and plastics.

  • All soft plastics and low-density polyethylene (LDPE) waste are reused where possible. The rest is sent for recycling. They use a plastic baler machine to reduce waste volume and save money, space and labour.
  • Plastic waste, including offcuts and spilled plastic powder, is reused and re-incorporated into manufacturing processes.