GEMI-Forging New Links

 Forging New Links

Enhancing Supply Chain Management
Through Environmental Excellence

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Executive Summary
Full Report in PDF Format



June 2004

The Global Environmental Management Initiative (GEMI) is proud to introduce the report, Forging New Links – Enhancing Supply Chain Value Through Environmental Excellence. It is the latest in a series of GEMI tools showing how environmental, health and safety (EHS) excellence can enhance the business performance of companies.

GEMI’s exploration of supply chain management began with the publication of New Paths to Business Value: Strategic Sourcing – Environment, Health and Safety in 2001. That report primarily examined how integrating EHS concerns into procurement processes could add business value. It became clear that many other EHS value creation opportunities exist throughout the complex web of relationships known as the supply chain. Forging New Links explores the potential value of integrating EHS capabilities into all of the business processes involved in delivering products and services to fulfill customer needs.

The purpose of Forging New Links is to describe a broad range of opportunities for EHS professionals, in collaboration with other functions within their companies, to enhance supply chain performance. The report and this web site are intended as resources to assist managers in recognizing, prioritizing, and pursuing specific value creation opportunities. The intended audience includes both EHS and supply chain professionals, as well as business executives.

With the globalization of companies and their supply chains, it is essential to look beyond the traditional role of EHS as a compliance function. EHS professionals can play an integral role in achieving improved financial performance and competitive advantage. The report reviews emerging trends in supply chain management that heighten the importance of EHS awareness, and shows how companies can construct a value proposition for EHS involvement. In addition, it provides a systematic methodology for each company to assess its situation, identify key issues, and pursue high-value opportunities. Case studies from GEMI member companies are used to illustrate these opportunities.

Forging New Links demonstrates that EHS professionals, working as part of a cross-functional team, can add value to typical supply chain processes and activities. Although much progress has been made, more needs to be done to integrate EHS value creation opportunities into supply chain decision-making. This tool offers a pragmatic step in that direction. In the long run, it is only through collaboration between EHS and supply chain professionals that these business value opportunities will be realized.

We hope that you will find this website a useful tool for driving improvements in your own supply chain that benefit both the enterprise and its stakeholders. GEMI would appreciate receiving any feedback you have with regard to this tool. Please submit your comments to

Bert Share, Anheuser-Busch, Inc.
John Harris, Eli Lilly and Company (formerly with Ashland, Inc.)
       Co-chairs, GEMI Supply Chain Work Group

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