Forty-five years ago, Bob Bechtold founded Harbec Inc., a contract manufacturer based in Ontario, N.Y. Over the decades, expertise in plastic injection molding, CNC machining and 3D additive processes have helped establish a loyal customer base in critical medical, industrial and military sectors — whose needs are highly demanding.
But Bechtold's vision for the company extended far beyond just its mechanical capabilities. Early on, he committed to making Harbec operations a true environmentally responsible manufacturing alternative and an example for us all. Though it may seem odd to look to a plastics manufacturer for environmental inspiration, the journey has proven to many that these initiatives are not only good for the planet but also they can serve the bottom line. For nearly 10 years now, Harbec has been 100 percent carbon- and water-neutral.
Investments in wind, solar and geothermal technologies have generated a clear return on investment. They also provide a climate-controlled, modern work environment for employees, which has bred a culture of heightened awareness around every decision. Can this process be performed with less water? Can cycle times be reduced to decrease energy consumption? Are alternative materials available that are recyclable, less toxic, made with nonfossil renewable ingredients? Can it be made lighter and packed more efficiently to reduce transportation costs and the associated pollutants? Every process and activity is questioned to address the three P's: people, planet and profit.