GM adds landfill-free sites in Europe, Mexico, U.S.

Melissa Burden
The Detroit News

General Motors Co. said Wednesday that it now has 131 landfill-free sites across the globe, as it recently added 15 sites in Mexico, England, Asia, Canada, and the U.S., including two here in Michigan.

The Detroit-based automaker wants to achieve 150 sites that send no waste to landfills by 2020. The company, which began the effort a decade ago, said it recently added the Luton Assembly and Ellesmere Port Assembly plants in Europe, meaning each of the 18 Opel/Vauxhall manufacturing plants now recycle, reuse or convert daily waste to energy.

In Mexico, GM converted two engine plants, a warehouse and technical center at GM’s Toluca complex to landfill-free status, meaning 16 GM Mexico facilities now send no waste to garbage dumps.

The company said the Toluca sites are working with suppliers to find uses for byproducts such as using polystyrene foam packaging and turning it into footwear. The material is crushed and densified into pellets, which later are combined with polymers to create soles for shoes.

“Our global progress in waste reduction is possible because of employee participation, creative ideas, and a strong supplier network,” Jim DeLuca, GM executive vice president of global manufacturing, said in a statement. “Our teams understand the positive impact of this initiative and they drive it in their facilities every day.”

GM also said new landfill-free sites include a spare parts facility in Howell and its Willow Run customer care and aftersales facility in Belleville. GM also recently added an engine plant in Uzbekistan; a Chevrolet office in India; an information technology innovation center in Georgia; and customer care and aftersales facilities in Cincinnati, Rancho Cucamonga (California), Woodstock (Ontario, Canada) and Langley (Vancouver, Canada).

GM now has 45 sites in the U.S. that are landfill-free, part of 65 in North America.

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