Sustainability a Core Value for Auto Companies

by June 25, 2013 at 4:00 pm 0

From John Shannon, who writes about green energy, sustainable development and economics. Email him at john[AT]

Embedding Sustainability As A Core Value

An international team of Volkswagen executives at the LEED Platinum certified VW plant in Chattanooga, Tenn., plant, following the ‘Think Blue’ five-year (2012-2018) global sustainability initiative, have developed a comprehensive, four-stage Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology that now serves as the template for its manufacturing facilities worldwide.

Baseline references in four key performance indicators (KPIs) — energy, water, waste, CO2 and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) — have been established to mark progress.

With Think Blue, VW management aims to reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions, water use, waste, and (VOCs) at its manufacturing facilities another 25% by 2018. (Information courtesy of

BMW to Power Leipzig Factory with Wind Energy

In addition to winning many prestigious awards for sustainable production practices, BMW is powering its Leipzig factory with four massive wind turbines located near the vehicle assembly facility which pumps out over 200,000 cars per year. (See BMW Group Dow Jones Sustainability Index Leader for 8th consecutive year.)

Mercedes Benz Making Electric Models Exciting


2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive. (Courtesy AMG)

Mercedes too, has upped the ante of super clean energy and sustainable production practices and the largest selection of all-electric vehicles in the world.

Not all electric drive and hybrid cars need to be boring, perhaps this little blue number will pique your interest.

Mercedes says the 2014 Mercedes Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive will hit 62 mph in 3.9 seconds and seconds later, you will find that it is electronically limited to 155 miles per hour.

AMG’s latest supercar comes with 740 of the quietest horsepower you will ever own and can be recharged in three hours.

The automakers have responded to calls for sustainability in their production facilities and vehicle materials and continue to post huge gains in those areas.

But who would have thought that they could make sustainability so much fun for consumers? I’m getting on the bandwagon all over again.

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