Ford Cut Plant CO2 Emissions By A Third Since 2000; Another Third By 2025 Targeted

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2014 Ford Fiesta: EcoBoost (European version)

2014 Ford Fiesta: EcoBoost (European version)

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There's more to making a car green than just the car itself.

Ideally, the whole process of making the car should be as environmentally-friendly as possible too. Ford is doing just that, having cut global carbon dioxide emissions at its plants by over a third since 2000.

CO2 emissions have dropped by 37 percent per vehicle between 2000 and 2012, and overall the drop is even greater. Total CO2 emissions have fallen by 4.65 million metric tons, or 47 percent lower than 2000's figures.

Take the automaker's continually-improving vehicles into account too--and similar efforts across the wider industry, and it's clear how hard the auto industry is working to clean up its act.

The figures come from Ford's voluntary sustainability report, "Blueprint for Sustainability: Our Journey Continues". A saccharine title perhaps, but behind it Ford publishes data on aspects such as water use, energy consumption and cuts in wastage and landfill.

Some of these latter indicators have dropped significantly in just a short space of time. Water use dropped by 1.95 million cubic meters from 2011 to 2012, cutting cost (by $3 million) as well as energy consumption. 2012's figures also marked a 62 percent drop since 2000.

Waste-to-landfill fell by 19 percent per vehicle between 2011 and 2012, and overall global energy efficiency improved by 6.4 percent between 2011-2012.

That's all pretty impressive, but from 2010 to 2025, Ford is expecting another 30 percent drop in CO2, and that's just at factories alone.

Building cars may make up only a small proportion of a car's lifetime emissions--around 6 percent for raw materials and assembly--but all those small proportions sure add up when you're producing millions of cars per year.


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Comments (4)
  1. What are emissions from vehicles produced from the plant per year? Does Ford have stats on reductions in vehicle emissions over same period?

    Reducing emissions reduces waste and has an economic benefit. This is great for Ford, but production is a small part of a vehicles life-cycle emissions, and total costs.

  2. On the surface, this seems like a great story of triumph of the voluntary goodwill and self-sacrifice for the greater global good. In reality, relying on this in order to save the planet over the past two decades led to an increase in global emisions of 45%. It really is a shame that environmentalists are refusing to pay atention to the basic fact that voluntary self-sacrifice for the greater good has been proven to be flawed by basic math (John Nash, "A beautiful mind").
    The Ford story is actually one of changing consumer preferences. It takes less energy to produce a compact car than an SUV. It would be wise to stop the dellusion.

  3. Hmmm? This is directly about saving money. Doing better with less is always good business. Throwing stuff into landfills or the air is wasted value, and worse still is having to pay for stuff you don't need in the first place. Every forward-looking company is now going green, and it's for just this reason.

  4. How much of that saving is from outsourcing and how much of that saving is from efficiency gain on a Per CAR Basis?

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