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Ford Beats Facilities Targets on Water, Efficiency, Waste

Last year Ford beat nearly all its facilities-based environmental targets, with a 5.6 percent improvement in global energy efficiency, and an eight percent reduction in water use, according to its 2010-11 sustainability report.

The cut in global water use, against a 2009 baseline, surpassed Ford’s six percent goal. Ford’s target for 2011 is a further five percent cut from 2010 levels.

In 2010 Ford developed and adopted a global water strategy, which it began implementing in 2011. The company is looking for another ten percent reduction in water use this year.

The report says that Ford improved U.S. facility energy efficiency by 4.6 percent in 2010, exceeding a three percent target. (Both the global and U.S. efficiency improvements were yearly rises measured against a 2006 baseline. For the global efficiency calculation, energy use is not adjusted for variances in production or weather, Ford notes.)

In 2011, the company is raising the bar by seeking a three percent improvement in both efficiency measures – but this time from a more efficient, 2010 baseline.

Global landfill waste was down 12.4 percent against 2009, exceeding a 10 percent per unit goal.  Emissions of volatile organic compounds from painting at North American assembly plants, at 21.6 grams per square meter, met Ford’s goal of staying at 24 g/sq m or less. This year it is lowering the threshold to 23 g/sq m.

Ford had aimed in 2010 to continue reducing energy use, and it did cut total direct and indirect operational energy consumption per unit in that year, from 3,087 to 3,272 kWh per vehicle. Worldwide facilities’ energy consumption rose from 15.1 billion to 16.1 billion kWh. Energy consumption at Ford has fallen 44 percent compared to 2000, the report said.

Until last year, Ford did not have CO2 reduction targets for its facilities. But worldwide, operational, direct and indirect CO2 emissions per unit did fall, from 1.07 metric tons per vehicle in 2009 to 1.01 in 2010.

In 2010, Ford developed CO2 reduction targets for all of its facilities. The commitments include:

  • A 30 percent reduction in facility CO2 emissions, by 2025, on a per-vehicle basis;
  • A promise to reduce GHG emissions from its global portfolio of products, enough to contribute to climate stabilization – even taking into account sales growth; and
  • A pledge that each new or significantly refreshed vehicle will be best in class, or among the best in class, for fuel economy.

In 2010 the company expanded its climate stabilization analysis, from the U.S. and Europe to all regions where it operates. This analysis defines the emission reductions needed to meet Ford’s commitment to help stabilize CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere at 450 ppm.

Last year Ford also completed the global implementation of its Environmental Operating System – including metrics, data collection and reporting. Its Powertrain Operations (PTO) completed the implementation of a global Sustainability Tracking and Rating system to encourage environmental manufacturing best practices.

In 2010 Ford announced three more engines with its EcoBoost fuel-saving technology. By 2013, Ford expects to produce about 1.5 million EcoBoost engines a year, about 200,000 more than originally expected, the report said.

Last year the company offered four models in North America that provide 40 miles per gallon or better – compared to 2009, when its most fuel-efficient vehicle achieved 35 miles per gallon. For the 2010 model year, fleet CO2 emissions increased by about 1 percent relative to the 2009 model year, but improved 11 percent compared to the 2006 model year. On an overall fleet basis, preliminary estimates indicate a 2011 Corporate Average Fuel Economy improvement of 2.9 percent compared to 2010.

Also in 2010, Ford increased its use of recycled, renewable and lightweight materials. It introduced soy foam headliners and wheat-straw-reinforced plastics, and expanded its use of recycled-content fabrics for seats and headliners. From 2011 on, all vehicles produced in North America will have soy foam seating, Ford says.

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