United States
                            Environmental Protection
                    Solid Waste
                    and Emergency Response
         EPA 530-F-97-009
         August 1997
Waste  Minimization:
Increased  Profits and
HADCO  Corporation
    SUM Investment;
Payback in 3 Years

    Eliminated Continuous

_ Eliminated Disposal of
800,000 Pounds of

If you don't factor in the cost
of those releases going up
your stack or out your dis-
charge or out in bulk ship-
ments for off site treatment
and disposal, then you don't
really have a good apprecia-
tion for the actual costs of
 What is the HADCO

    HADCO Corporation is one of
 the nation's largest manufacturers of
 printed wiring boards, the funda-
 mental building blocks of all elec-
 tronic components. Common uses
 include computers, telecommunica-
 tions, medical devices, and automo-
 tive components. The complex,
 multi-step manufacturing process
 requires many hazardous solvents,
 including 1,1,1-trichloroethane
 (TCA) and methylene chloride.

 What Did They Accomplish?

    Through their continued efforts
 in waste minimization, HADCO has
 succeeded in reducing both releases
 and transfers of toxic chemicals tar-
 geted in EPA's 33/50 program by
 99.5%. As a result, the facility saves
 $600,000 per year in avoided chlori-
 nated solvent purchases and associ-
 ated disposal costs.


    HADCO's achievements at the
 Derry, New Hampshire facility
 occurred in two stages. First, they
 implemented a solvent recovery sys-
 tem on two of the five production
 lines that used methylene chloride.
 At the same time, they eliminated
chlorinated solvents from the other
three production lines. In the second
stage, HADCO eliminated TCA and
methylene chloride completely from
all five production lines by switch-
ing to aqueous solvents such as

   Elimination of chlorinated sol-
vents has impacted more than just
air and water emissions: annual dis-
posal of 800,000 pounds  of spent
methylene chloride has also been
eliminated. Prior to implementing
the program, HADCO was the
largest environmental polluter in
New Hampshire.  These achieve-
ments have greatly improved public
relations, and moved HADCO
down the list of New Hampshire's
pollution generators.

Regulatory Relief

   To meet regulatory requirements
for the solvent recovery system,
HADCO was required to install a
continuous emissions  monitoring
system (CEMS) and to produce
monthly reports. The CEMS gener-
ated high maintenance and opera-
tional costs. Once the solvent recov-
ery system was discontinued, the
costly CEMS was no longer

   Eliminating chlorinated solvents
reduced regulatory burdens associ-

 Waste Minimization: Increased Profits and Productivity
 HADCO Corporation
ated with several environmental

     Clean Air Act  eliminated
     solvents were targeted for
     phase out;

     Emergency Planning and
     Community Right-to-Know
     Act  eliminated solvents
     were reportable under Section

     Resource Conservation and
     Recovery Act  eliminated
     solvents were regulated as haz-

The Implementation Process

    Impetus for the initial solvent
recovery system and later for the
elimination of TCA and methylene
chloride primarily came through
HADCO's senior management.
They thought HADCO should be
"...number one in making circuit
boards, not number one in Toxic
Release Inventory releases." Both
approaches were developed in
house, involving site engineers and
the corporate vice president of engi-
neering. Implementation of the ini-
tial solvent recovery system required
about a year from inception to exe-
cution, though Mr. Wilmot, Manager
of Corporate Safety, Health, and
Environmental Affairs, noted that
obtaining air and water permits cre-
ated the biggest delays. Once the
recovery system was implemented,
workers needed to be trained in
operating the CEMS. Afterward,
HADCO phased out chlorinated
chemicals from all production lines.

    HADCO monitored effectiveness
of the systems in two ways:
     duction and costs of chemical
     purchasing; and

    Chemical monitoring of both
     raw material inputs and efflu-
Economics: Costs and

   Funding for these improvements
came from internal sources. While
Mr. Wilmot noted that there is typi-
cally internal competition for  capital
improvement projects, funding for
these improvements was non-discre-

   HADCO invested $1.7 million in
the project, which covered the cost
of installing the initial solvent recov-
ery system on two production lines
and the cost of converting all  five
chlorinated solvent-using lines to
aqueous solvents. This included
equipment purchase, installation
and labor.

   Payback for these activities came
within three years, and resulted pri-
marily from HADCO no longer
spending $600,000 per year on chlo-
rinated solvents.  There were  no
reductions in disposal costs -  in fact,
before implementing these changes,
spent methylene  chloride was
shipped off site at no charge for
recovery. The current aqueous sol-
vents annually generate 200,000
pounds of sludge that HADCO must
pay to have disposed as hazardous
   Implementation of these changes
presented no major hurdles. The
most difficult problem with the sol-
vent recovery system was getting
across the fact that when the CEMS
malfunctioned, production had to be
stopped. This required a significant
behavioral change in a plant that
operates continuously. This behav-
ioral change was only temporary,
since elimination of the chlorinated
solvents also eliminated the need for
the CEMS.  There were no negative
impacts to the quantity and quality
of goods produced.

Words to the Wise

   Lee Wilmot cautions those con-
sidering implementation of waste
minimization projects to look closely
at their cost accounting systems.
"Total cost accounting is what is sell-
ing pollution prevention and waste
minimization. But if you don't fac-
tor in the cost of those releases going
up your stack or out your discharge
or out in bulk shipments for off site
treatment and disposal, then you
don't really have a good apprecia-
tion  [for the actual costs of pollu-
tion]. If all you're focusing on is
how much  it costs to operate your
solvent recovery system or waste-
water treatment system, or trans-
porting  that waste to the end site,
you've missed a big, big part of your
cost  of operations."

     Cost accounting, which exam-
     ined operational costs of pro-
For more information about the Waste Minimization National Plan, call (800) 424-9346
or check the World Wide Web at
                                           Reducing Toaesm Our Raton's Waste