Sustainability is a concept that is becoming a lot more important to the welding profession. Tulsa Welding School has talked about some of the environmental practices that have started to change the welding profession in beneficial ways. This could be good news for women that care about sustainability, since many of them have already struggled with challenges getting accepted in the workplace as it is.
“Today’s global emphasis on environmental sustainability has made a major impact on how many industries work. From the Consumer Electronics Association’s ongoing push for green initiatives to China’s enormous emphasis on clean energy technologies, the industrial world is making a concerted effort to adopt healthier, more efficient methods—including welding methods. Here is a sample of the environmentally friendly welding technology that today’s (and tomorrow’s) welders may be expected to use,” writes author Oanh Nguyen.
Women welders are a misunderstood bunch. Women welders that also talk about environmental sustainability struggle with an even greater stigma. Not a lot of people believe that women can actually be good welders. Welding is still considered a dirty job that most men are able to do. Girls are viewed as not being strong nor skilled enough to work with a welder.
Which couldn’t further from the truth. Unfortunately, the stigma remains. Those that talk about eco-friendly practices might not get the same positive reception that a man would.
The good news is that the changes are on the rise and there is various evidence that supports women being good at welding. This means that they can not only enter the profession, but also bring an encouraging focus on eco-friendly welding practices that reduce the carbon footprint of manufacturing.
Let’s start with the basics in order to better understand the root of the problem.
What is Welding?
The process of welding is the method that involves joining two pieces of metal into one. It may be an ancient process but is a reliable and important one. Most of the objects made of metal that are found in our society are created thanks to some type of welding process.
There are various types of welding methods. Choosing the welding method will depend on the type of material you are working on and its usage. Some of the basic tools needed are a welder, a plasma cutter, electrodes, shielding gas, and a welding helmet for protection.
Welding can be hard to master, depending on the process. It is not easy as you have to possess great physical endurance and certain characteristics to do it. Since a female is regarded as the weaker sex, this is where the misconception about women welders comes from.
What Advantages do Women Possess for Welding?
In order to break the myth about guys only being suitable for welding, we need to explain that strength and muscles are not the only things needed to be good at it. In fact, it requires keeping balance, having a steady hand, and being mindful about your health. All three in which women are far better than men.
Women have an innate ability to balance their weight better than men do. Being that they have a lower center of gravity they can climb high up and minting balance longer than men can. This is very useful when welding parts of buildings or similar things.
Precise welding requires hand stability. According to studies, men’s hands tend to shake more often than women’s. Guys have a bigger chance to suffer from tremors than girls do. This gives them an edge when dealing with some really touchy work.
Finally, safety is one of the most important aspects of welding. Women suffer fewer injuries than men simply because they follow the safety protocols and take care of themselves much better than men. Women also get sick less often than men do.
How Does Sustainability Come into the Equation?
Sustainable welding practices can be very important. We talked about some of them in one of our previous articles.
Eco-friendly welding practices aren’t just good for the environment. Removing pollution is also important for helping reduce lung cancer and other problems that air toxins create.
Many women that talk about sustainability bring these issues into the fold when they are welders. Eco-friendly welding can be more common as more women join the profession.
How Might the Future for Sustainable Women Welders Look?
As things stand now, the future of women welders is promising. Even though now women welders make up only 1% of the entire welding workforce, their ranks have been slowly but surely going up. From 2016 to 2019, a thousand women welders have joined the ranks and the numbers keep climbing.
But there are more reasons for women to be hopeful in the future. It is expected from them to replace the current working force in just a few years from now. Most of the current professional welders are going to retire in a year or two. Since younger people are not really that much interested in welding we are going to experience a lack of reliable professionals in the field.
This opens the doors for women that are already prepared to jump in their place with a welder at hand.
What are the Incentives for Women Welders?
A lot of people only see the bad side of welding. It is true that it could be a difficult and dangerous job but the benefits can be enormous. In fact, it is one of the highest paying jobs in the world. Given its importance, it is no wonder why welders are being paid so much.
The more difficult the job the higher the paycheck. Welding jobs that pay the most are the ones that involve deep-sea welding or high position welding. Military also employs welders for fixing up their equipment and in some cases, they are shipped off to war zones.
All in all, sacrifices are needed but the benefits come with more figures on your payslip.