General Motors Co. has accomplished its goal for more than half of the waste generated at its 145 plants worldwide to be “landfill free.” This means that the waste gets reused, recycled or converted into energy. In 2008, GM voluntarily made a pledge to achieve 50% landfill-free status by the end of this year.
In a statement, Mike Robinson, GM's vice president of environment, energy and safety policy, said that each site is “serious” about discovering methods to “reduce or reuse waste.”
GM claims that for 2010, it has recycled or reused 2.5 million tons of waste material, which can fill 6.8 million extended-cab pickup trucks.
There’s an awesome sight at GM's assembly plant in Fort Wayne, Ind., where cardboard shipping scraps are recycled and used as sound-absorber material for the Buick Lacrosse sedan.
In addition, plastic caps from the plant are converted into radiator shrouds for the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups, which are both produced at the plant.
In Robinson’s estimates, GM has made $2.5 billion in revenue from recycling since 2007. For instance, metal scraps from stamping or powertrain operations would be either melted for use or later bought by foundries.