UK – With the recent addition of Luton Assembly and Ellesmere Port Assembly, a total of 23 manufacturing facilities for the brands now recycle, reuse and convert to energy all waste from their daily operations – making Europe GM’s first region to be fully landfill-free.
“We at Opel/Vauxhall see waste as a resource out of place and want to go beyond the classical waste reduction targets that you usually reach by optimisation of existing processes,” said Renate Adam, manager Environmental Compliance and Sustainability, Opel/Vauxhall Europe. “Only if you understand waste as raw material [do] you start to rethink your current processes and develop new ways to run your business differently. Strategically, we do not only want to be landfill-free, we want to improve the re-use of material.”
Jim DeLuca, executive vice-president of Global Manufacturing at GM, attributed the company’s global progress in waste reduction to “employee participation, creative ideas and a strong supplier network”. He added: “Our teams understand the positive impact of this initiative and they drive it in their facilities every day.”
The newly landfill-free facilities in Europe used a number of methods to achieve this status, including: recycling courses; training videos; the assignment of an employee in each department to champion the cause; and the recognition of workers who are driving progress.
GM currently has 131 landfill-free facilities, with an aim of raising this to 150 worldwide by 2020.