UNIDO publishes study on Sustainable Leather Manufacture

Worldwide
Published:  25 June, 2015

The tanning industry is a key sector in UNIDO’s mission to promote sustainable development. Since the late 1990s, a number of studies dealing with cleaner tanning methods have been published to help prepare different kinds of training programmes for the industry, including the widely used paper “The Scope for Decreasing Pollution Load in Leather Processing”.

Since then, new tanning technologies have been developed and implemented, accompanied by new challenges. UNIDO considers proper training as an essential precondition for modern, sustainable leather processing and has prepared a new study - a comprehensive paper on cleaner leather technologies which rounds up and updates earlier papers. The aim is to assist with training and capacity building activities.

This comprehensive study addresses traditional cleaner technologies topics such as pollution sources/loads, water management, hair-save liming, low or ammonia-free deliming, chrome management, low-organic solvents finishing, solid waste as well as issues relevant to the performance and successful operations of tanning activities: environmental management systems (EMS/CSR), Restricted Substances Lists (RSL), energy considerations, Occupational Safety and Health at workplace (OSH), Carbon Footprint (CF) and Life Cycle Analysis (LCA). So the paper tackles much of the current international debates.

For the time being, the study is published as a working paper, open to further corrections and modifications. The final document should serve as a basis for developing globally accessible eLearning courses on sustainable leather manufacture.

The document is available on: http://leatherpanel.org/content/framework-sustainable-leather-manufacture-working-paper

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