Honda of America Manufacturing Inc. is now encouraging its suppliers to also stop sending factory waste to landfills as the carmaker has nearly totally kicked the dump habit.
Karen Heyob, associate chief engineer and manager of Honda’s zero-landfill program, said that Honda’s program to help suppliers in North America with this endeavor will be launched this year. Heyob acknowledged that landfilling is less costly but Honda wants to be different from other companies.
She said that Honda believes that landfills won’t solve waste management. Honda’s zero-landfill program started in 2011 at its Lincoln, Ala. auto plant.
Honda now claims that of its 14 U.S., Canadian and Mexican factories, ten can now boast of having zero-landfill status. Honda spokesman Ed Miller said that when the carmaker says “zero landfill,” what it means is absolutely zero and not 1% or 2%. In the past decade, Honda has been focused on finding alternative uses for waste materials.
These include the use of oily rags, packaging materials, cafeteria garbage and paint sludge. Heyob asserted that this year, Honda will only produce about 2 pounds of landfill waste for each vehicle built in North America.
In 2001, Honda generated 63 pounds of waste per vehicle. She said that parts and material companies will be motivated to use the same zero-landfill targets via the new Supplier Sustainability program from Honda. She said that by adopting these measures, the suppliers will have plenty of opportunity to improve cost management.