Monday, March 4, 2013

Ford Motor Co's Waste Reduction Efforts

On February 27, 2013, Ford Motor Co. revealed a five-year global strategy to reduce waste sent to landfill by 40 percent per vehicle. The initiative which began in 2011 will run until 2016. According to Ford, its vehicles will produce a mere 13.4 pounds of waste per vehicle. To achieve these goals the company will implement lean manufacturing practices, improved waste-sorting procedures, and investments in waste reducing technologies.

Previously Ford has successfully reduced waste sent to landfill by 40 percent per vehicle between 2007 and 2011, (cutting waste from 37.9 to 22.7).

The company is also working to reduce waste on a number of fronts ranging from better packaging through their global suppliers to addressing kitchen waste at Ford facilities.

The company has also turned to its workforce to help with these initiatives. Employees at its Van Dyke Transmission plant managed to keep 120 tons worth of coolant filters out of the landfill on a yearly basis to become Ford’s first North American zero-waste-to-landfill transmission plant. The plant avoids sending a total of 15 tons of waste from landfills on a monthly basis.

Ford plants in Michigan; Cologne, Germany; Genk, Belgium; Chennai, India; Lio Ho, Taiwan and Nanchang, China have all achieved zero waste-to-landfill status.

In 2011, Ford facilities globally sent about 56,000 metric tons of waste to landfill, a reduction of 11.3 percent from 2010. Year-on-year the company also reduced landfill disposal by more than 19 percent on a per-vehicle basis.

© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

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