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Intern: María Gabriela Rivas Mira, Environmental Science and Development

María Gabriela did her internship in the Quality and Environment Management Systems Department of the Aditivos y Quimicos S.A.S company in Medellin, Colombia. The company produces chemical additive micro-nutrient pre-mixtures for animal concentrates, and she worked with Professor Laura Yepes to develop a sustainable operational plan for the company. Maria Gabriela´s work first required completing detailed data analysis of energy, water, natural gas consumption and the production of hazardous and ordinary waste from 2019. The goal was to report the company´s performance regarding emissions, waste disposal and dumping parameters to environmental authorities.

Maria Gabriela proposed alternatives to improving processes that included developing a flowchart and identifying areas for improvement that would result in a more digitalized plant (this with support from the staff). In addition, she used the design of the plant model to present opportunities for diminishing staff intervention in the production process. Likewise, she developed an outreach campaign to educate the staff on the importance of their participation in classifying ordinary waste and reducing the poor practices that were generating excess waste. This campaign created awareness of the importance of the staff´s contributions.  The result?  The company was able to realize “green growth”.

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