Guest Post – GM: Demonstrating Leadership on Sustainability

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Guest Post – GM: Demonstrating Leadership on Sustainability

By David Foster, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance
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Monday, July 15, 2013 - 9:45am

CAMPAIGN: 2012 Sustainability Report

CONTENT: Blog

Last month, President Obama laudably committed his Administration to take significant action toward cutting carbon pollution, transitioning to renewable and improving efficiency in order to combat climate change. One measure he stated as key to curbing our carbon footprint were strong vehicle efficiency and pollution standards – a measure already embraced by America’s leading auto manufacturers.

These standards, which will nearly double America’s light duty vehicle fuel efficiency to 54.5 miles per gallon (mpg) by 2025, are one of the single largest actions taken to date by the Obama Administration, and will result in an estimated 12 billion barrels of oil saved, 6 billion fewer tons of carbon dioxide, and as BlueGreen Alliance published in a landmark report last year, more than 570,000 jobs created by 2030 in the auto industry and throughout the U.S. economy.

These actions demonstrate the true meaning of leadership – bold, decisive, and effective. General Motors has responded to the call by deploying a variety of conventional and advanced vehicles, like the fuel-sipping Chevy Cruze and plug-in hybrid Chevy Volt, to deliver the high-performance, high-efficiency cars that consumers demand in the marketplace.

GM is a committed leader to sustainability in growing, impactful ways – both on and off the showroom floor. They understand that leadership demonstrated by our elected officials must be complemented by innovation and follow-through in the private sector as well.

On their sustainability website, GM outlines not only their progress towards an efficient and advanced model line-up, but also towards reducing energy use, recycling waste and ramping up renewables throughout their operations.

Among these initiatives:

  • Deploying 500,000 U.S. vehicles with some form of electrification by 2017. These models today include the Chevrolet Volt, Spark EV and Buick LaCrosseRegal,Chevrolet Malibu and Impala with eAssist.
  • Doubling the number of models that achieve 40-mpg highway or better by 2017.
  • Reducing their average U.S. fleet carbon dioxide emissions 15 percent by 2016 and their European fleet by 27 percent by 2020.
  • Committing to energy management and renewable energy sources, having reduced their carbon intensity by 5 percent since 2010, putting them well on track to a 20 percent reduction commitment by 2020.
  • Employment of more than 60 megawatts (MW) of solar, landfill gas and biomass energy at its facilities – almost halfway to its 125 megawatt renewable energy goal. These initiatives are also good for the bottom line – avoiding $66 million in energy costs since 2010.
  • An industry-leading 105 facilities that recycle, reuse or convert to energy all waste from daily operations. GM generates about $1 billion in revenue annually by recycling and reusing 90 percent of its manufacturing waste worldwide, and many of these facilities are entirely landfill-free.

Leadership. President Obama has displayed it throughout his two terms in office, and especially last month in committing to tackle climate change in meaningful ways. Through their actions, GM is taking on a leadership mantle in the private sector to help deliver on these promises, and ensuring a fiscally sound and environmentally sustainable company in the process.

Keywords: Environment | BlueGreen Alliance | Buick LaCrosse | Buick Regal | Chevrolet Cruze | Chevrolet Impala | Chevrolet Malibu | Chevrolet Spark EV | David Foster | GM | General Motors

CAMPAIGN: 2012 Sustainability Report

CONTENT: Blog

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