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Sustainable MRO Solutions | Aviation Maintenance Magazine

25 Mar 2024

What does it mean to be sustainable? The United Nations Brundtland Commission defines it as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” When it comes to MROs and their suppliers, being sustainable means serving customers today while reducing their impact on the environment over time. But how does this form of sustainability translate into action?

In a recent article for Aviation Maintenance Magazine, James Careless consults industry-leading MROs about their sustainability actions.

Focussing his discussion on MROs who are taking targeted, practical steps that are delivering results right now, Careless begins by asking SVP Operations, Louis Philippe Mallette about the steps AJW Technique has taken to drive sustainability in its operations.

Mallette replies that AJW is driving sustainability by implementing more environmentally friendly products and practices into our operations.
 
 

He states that this includes reducing harmful waste by introducing sustainable alternatives in AJW’s warehouses, such as eco-friendly packaging tape and materials. The Group is also exploring innovations in the materials and chemicals used across the entire operation, with the end goal of ensuring the entire life cycle of their aviation components is eco-friendly.

 

Careless continues, asking about the sustainability actions involving electricity usage across AJW Group.

 

Expressing that AJW Technique has a head start in the area of electricity consumption, Mallette explains that AJW Technique facility in Montreal is located in Quebec, Canada, where virtually 100% of electrical power is generated from renewable sources (primarily hydro power). This makes it the ideal location for Technique’s more energy intensive activities.

 

Even with this advantage, AJW Technique is continuously reviewing opportunities to reduce its energy consumption. “Recent examples include the full retrofit of lighting at our 220,000 square foot facility, and the replacement of our air compressors, which were notably oversized for the requirement with optimized units to meet our needs,” said Mallette.

 

 
Sustainable MRO Solutions | Aviation Maintenance Magazine

Mallette proudly states that AJW headquarters has installed a rainwater harvesting system and solar panels at its facility in Slinfold. This, along with other efforts have reduced AJW’s annual CO2 emissions by 425 tonnes.

 

The next stage of this plan - which is already well underway - is to power AJW Technique Europe (located in Slinfold, UK) with solar energy, enabling the Battery Centre of Excellence to recharge aircraft batteries sustainably

 

What about sustainability efforts that extend beyond AJW’s physical facilities?

 

Mallette states that the MRO’s Procurement Teams actively seek suppliers and partners who share similar sustainability principles. “Collaborating with like-minded partners ensures a more comprehensive approach to sustainability throughout our business operations,” he says. It’s not just about the product but about the entire process leading to it.” 

 

The bottom line, states Careless, is that when it comes to becoming more sustainable, AJW Technique is ‘walking the talk’ across its entire operation — positioning this company as a leader in fostering sustainability within the aviation sector.

 

Moving on to talk about the economic benefits of sustainability projects, Careless observes that while becoming more sustainable is a responsible social policy for MROs, it is also good business. Airlines and other aircraft operators want to be more sustainable to satisfy environmentally conscious customers and the governments that regulate the industry.

 

Mallette agrees that if operators do not listen to the needs of their customersthey may opt for a greener airline - which has the knock-on effect of providing a sustainability incentive for MROs.

  

If we are to ensure the economic health of our industry going forward, MROs such as AJW Technique must adopt and provide sustainable solutions within their business and MRO operations. The world and passengers are demanding it from the industry, he says.

 

Mallette then concludes that Remaining economically viable in the MRO industry requires staying at the forefront of sustainable practicesCollaboration will drive the health of the industry, while also protecting the planet and its people.” 
 
Looking for a sustainable MRO operation that’s a member of the UN Global CompactContact AJW Technique today.  

 

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