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Monday, 20 October 2014 11:31

Vauxhall's Luton warehouse latest site to gain landfill-free status

Vauxhall's Luton parts warehouse has joined a growing list of General Motor's facilities that have achieved landfill-free status. The running total is 122 manufacturing and non-manufacturing operations spanning Asia, Europe, and South and North America that recycle, reuse or convert to energy all waste from daily operations.

vauxhallzerolandfillEmployee awareness is key in the drive to landfill-free. Vauxhall has run awareness campaigns that engage employees in reducing waste and sorting it correctly. Luton Warehouse attributes its success to a robust training initiative that drove a zero-waste culture.

"Our landfill-free movement is part of our culture of continuous improvement embraced by teams globally," said Peter Durham, Operations Manager at the Luton warehouse. "Not only does it make our operations more efficient and help conserve vital resources, but it means that we're able to reinvest the money into other parts of the business including our new products."

All of these facilities treat their waste as resources out of place and employ a number of methods to give them a second or third life, a strong network of recycling partners and suppliers helps these facilities achieve their goals. Localising the supply chain also strengthens the business case and reduces the overall carbon footprint.

GM's new landfill-free facilities include:

Luton Warehouse (UK)
CAMI Assembly (Canada)
Colmotores Assembly (Colombia)
Joinville Engine (Brazil)
Zaragoza Assembly (Spain)
Zaragoza Stamping (Spain)
Grand Rapids Operations (Michigan)
Burton Warehouse and Distribution Centre (Michigan)
GM Heritage Centre (Michigan)
Shanghai Headquarters (China)
Fontana Warehouse and Distribution Centre (California)

The addition of these 11 facilities to landfill-free status helps GM globally avoid more than 600,000 metric tons of CO2-equivalent emissions. This is comparable to the greenhouse gas benefit of 15 million tree seedlings grown for 10 years.

"Our ultimate goal is not to generate any waste at all," said John Bradburn, GM global manager of waste reduction. "Until then, we do everything we can to ensure it doesn't end up in the ground. From connecting with our suppliers on special recycling projects to reusing packaging, we apply lessons learned across all of our operations to broaden the positive impact."

GM's goal is to achieve 125 landfill-free sites globally by 2020. The company has already met its 10% total waste reduction commitment – seven years ahead of schedule.

LINKS
Vauxhall UK - sustainability & corporate resonsibility
General Motors - quest for landfill-free