UN sustainability goals inform new Equipment Manufacturers council

As part of a commitment to building on the momentum of a sustainable future, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers has established a Sustainability Council comprised of leaders from member companies. Through the Council, they will help advance AEM member efforts in addressing issues of sustainability and provide a framework for adoption of best practices and innovation.

More information on the AEM Sustainability Council and its alignment with the United Nations 17-point action model is posted at www.aem.org/sustainability

“Our members are committed to supporting a sustainable world by serving as a catalyst for conversation and innovation in the manufacturing industry,” says AEM Senior Vice President Curt Blades. “The Sustainability Council will work to spark ideas for establishing sustainability priorities for equipment manufacturing.”

AEM members and staff recognize that social and environmental challenges are complex and require transformation at all levels of an organization, he adds, while the industry is committed to supporting a sustainable world by serving as a catalyst for conversation and innovation in the equipment manufacturing industry. Throughout its 125-year history, AEM has worked to address societal and safety issues on behalf of the industry, targeting:

  • Health and well-being of the industry. Leading the effort on equipment safety through safety materials programs, enabling the development of worldwide standards on topics related to seat belts, roll over protective structures and cab filtration.
  • Economic growth and security. The equipment manufacturing industry pays 35 percent above the national average for all manufacturing sector jobs. This demonstrates the commitment the industry has to ensuring employees are appropriately valued by receiving a fair and living wage.
  • Industry innovation and infrastructure. Equipment manufacturers are uniquely familiar with integrating innovative technologies into their operations and working to modernize infrastructure, whether it includes using precision agriculture techniques or deploying smart technology to ensure sustainably, efficient methods when building roads, rails, highways, bridges or ports.

AEM recognizes the industry’s connection to the natural environment and is dedicated to minimizing its operational impact. Staff is working to help members fully align with the United Nation’s Sustainability Development Goals, which are all interconnected and considered to be the blueprint to achieve a better future by addressing global challenges. AEM views seven goals as priority:

#2. Zero Hunger. Provide sustainable access to quality food in sufficient quantities. AEM and member company impact: Invest in technology and infrastructure to increase the amount and quality of food produced while reducing the inputs of chemicals and amount of land and water needed.

#3. Good Health and Well Being. Contribute to safe and healthy living environment. AEM and member company impact: Champion safety in all aspects of the industry from the substances used in design, to the practices used to build and operate equipment while championing safe global standards to ensure common safe approaches. During Covid-19, the association provided health and safety guidelines, resources and information to member companies.

#6. Clean Water and Sanitation. Universal access to Clean water and use of sanitation. AEM and member company impact: Industry stakeholders work to reduce water use in manufacturing, increase access to clean drinking water, reduce pollution, and minimize use of harmful chemicals.

#8. Decent Work and Economic Growth. Create job opportunities. AEM and member company impact: Provide opportunities for everyone to get work that is productive and provides a fair and living wage. AEM Workforce Solutions efforts help members connect with and retain talent.

#9. Industry Innovation and Infrastructure. Encourage innovations in industry and processes to produce sustainable solutions. AEM and member company impact: Manufacture globally and provide innovative solutions to build infrastructure.

#12. Responsible Consumption and Production. Smart sustainable use of natural resources and chemicals. AEM and member company impact: Understand product content and where materials are sourced and how they are procured. Work to reduce waste and increase recycling.

#13. Climate Action. Reducing our impact on greenhouse gas inventories. AEM and member company impact: Work to reduce emissions while increasing energy conservation and creating more fuel-efficient machinery.