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2008 Earth Angel Award

General Motors


  1. Name 3 or more environmental initiatives your company has sponsored in 2007.

- At its manufacturing facilities in the last five years on a global basis, GM has reduced energy use by nearly 15 percent, reduced water use by 19 percent, and reduced CO2 emissions by more than 16 percent.

- GM is one of the leading users of renewable energy in North America. The nation’s first solar power installation over 1mW began operating at a GM facility in Rancho Cucamonga, California, in July 2006. The system provides 50 percent of the facility’s electricity. Electricity generated by the system but not used is fed back to the grid – recently it provided enough electricity to power 210 homes for one month. In Sept. 2007, GM added more solar power, announcing that it is adding one of the largest solar power installations in corporate use in the U.S. to the roof of its Service and Parts Operations warehouse in Fontana, California. The solar power array will provide about half of the electricity needed to run the facility and will feed enough extra electricity back to the grid to power over 300 California homes for a year.

- GM’s Baltimore transmission plant, which will build the industry’s first two-mode hybrid transmission for GM’s full-size SUVs and pickups, announced in Aug. 2007 that it has officially achieved “landfill free” status—meaning it will no longer send any waste from its production operations to landfills. Baltimore becomes the eighth GM facility worldwide to reach zero landfill status. This, and other accomplishments, led to GM being one of the first organizations – and the only automaker to date -- inducted into the U.S. EPA WasteWise Hall of Fame.

-- Through Sept. 2007, GM has delivered more than 800 GM-Allison hybrid-equipped buses to over 70 cities in North America and Europe. Orders for an additional 379 hybrid bus systems in North America will be fulfilled throughout 2007. Transit buses with GM-Allison’s hybrid technology deliver up to 75 percent better fuel economy than traditional transit buses, and reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides up to 39 percent, particulate matter up to 97 percent, carbon monoxide up to 60 percent and hydro carbons up to 75 percent.

2. Name 3 or more environmental initiatives your company will support in 2008.  

- GM will continue the development of its new E-Flex System, a flexible all-electric production vehicle architecture that can be configured to run on electricity from a number of renewable sources. The E-Flex system also allows for the packaging of various types of propulsion systems in the same space, depending on what energy is available locally. When using GM’s new fifth-generation fuel cell propulsion technology and a lithium-ion battery, the system can provide up to 300 miles of petroleum- and emissions-free electric driving.

- GM is launching the largest test fleet of fuel cell vehicles in the world called, “Project Driveway.” The initiative launches in the fall of 2007 and will run through 2008. One hundred Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell vehicles will be placed with drivers in California, New York City, and Washington, D.C. The program is designed to gain comprehensive learnings on all aspects of the customer experience and it constitutes the first meaningful market test of fuel cell vehicles anywhere.

- GM will continue to help expand the availability and use of the alternative fuel, E85 ethanol. Using E85 ethanol helps to reduce the use of petroleum and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. To date, GM has helped with the launch of more than 265 E85 fuel pumps in 14 states and Washington, D.C., and is the leader in flexible fuel vehicles with over 2.5 million of them on the road in the U.S. For the 2008 model year, GM is offering 12 E85 vehicle models.

3. Name any environmental awards your company has received in the last year.

- 2007 Corporate Energy Management of the Year – Association of Energy Engineers

- Gold Certification-U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program (Lansing Delta Township Assembly – 1 st auto plant in the world to get this)

- U.S. EPA WasteWise Hall of Fame

- GM recognized in 2006 for being one of the first five companies to reach their Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals set as part of the U.S. EPA Climate Leaders Program

- (2006) GM Canada recognized as a Gold Champion Level Reporter for the 7 th consecutive year by the CSA Climate Change, Greenhouse Gas Registries

- Gold Awards in the Neighborhood Environmental Partners Program by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to three GM manufacturing facilities

- Energy Star certification from the U.S. EPA for GM’s Renaissance Center Headquarters

- GM’s Beth Lowery, vice president, Environment, Energy and Safety Policy, received a Distinguished Service Citation from the Automotive Hall of Fame (February 2007) for her significant contribution to the auto industry as GM’s chief environmental officer; GM’s Pontiac Assembly Center became a member of the MDEQ’s Clean Corporate Citizen program (October 2006)

-(May 2006) SAE International Environmental Excellence in Transportation Award

4. Name all vehicles that your company currently has in production that are hybrid, diesel, solar-powered, flex-fuel, natural gas, ethanol, or any other alternative fuels.  

2008 E85-capable models: U.S.: Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, Chevrolet Avalanche, Chevrolet Tahoe, GMC Yukon, Chevrolet Suburban, GMC Yukon XL, Chevrolet Impala, Chevrolet Express, GMC Savana, Chevrolet Uplander, Pontiac Montana. Sweden: Saab 9-5 BioPower.

2008 hybrid models: Saturn Vue Green Line, Saturn Aura Green Line, Chevrolet Malibu, Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid (2-Mode System), GMC Yukon Hybrid (2-Mode System), GM Allison two-mode hybrid system for transit buses (currently have 720 buses in 56 cities in the U.S. and Canada).

2008 diesel models: 16 engine variants in 41 vehicle lines around the world – GM sells over one million diesel engines annually. Examples include the Opel Agila, Opel Corsa, and 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel in medium and heavy-duty pickup trucks and full-size vans in the U.S.

2008 biodiesel models: GM approves the use of certified biodiesel blends of up to 5 percent (B5 biodiesel blend).

5. Name all environmental organizations your company supports.  

Governmental: Voluntary Initiatives on Energy and Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Freedom CAR

Non-Governmental: CERES, The Nature Conservancy, Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative – Kennedy School, Harvard University, EarthForce GREEN, California Fuel Cell Partnership,

Business: World Business Council for Sustainable Development, Suppliers Partnership for the Environment,  

6. In 100 words or less, what is your company position and mission on global warming?  

GM is concerned about the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and believes there is a constructive way for all stakeholders to move forward together. GM believes the development and global implementation of new, cost-effective energy technologies in all sectors is the most effective way to improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This approach is best facilitated by relying on voluntary initiatives and market-oriented measures, not government mandates. GM also continues to support scientific research to improve the understanding of the possible long-term effects of economic growth and other human activities on the climate system.