2009 Honda EARTH ANGEL APPLICANT SUBMISSION
Based on goal of being “a company that society wants to exist,” Honda has long viewed the preservation of the environment as a core management responsibility. As a responsible member of society whose task lies in the preservation of the global environment, the company will make every effort to contribute to human health and the preservation of the global environment in each phase of corporate activity. Only in this way will we be able to promote a successful future not only for our company, but for the entire world.
1. Name 3 or more environmental initiatives your company sponsored in 2008 and three more they plan to support in the near future.
Leading the way in alternative fuels, Honda is the only manufacturer that has put not only one, but two true alternative fuel vehicles on the road: The FCX Clarity, Honda’s hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle, and the nation’s only natural gas-powered passenger car, the Civic GX.
- The FCX Clarity is the only fuel cell vehicle on the road built from the ground up (leasing began in July 2008 and will expand to apprx. 200 individuals in Southern California over the next three years). Built in Japan on the world’s only assembly line dedicated to building fuel cell vehicles, the FCX’s only emissions is water vapor.
- The other alternative fuel vehicle, the Civic GX, has the cleanest internal combustion engine ever tested by the EPA and it is the only vehicle in the U.S. certified by the U.S. EPA to meet Tier 2 BIN 2 and Inherently Low Emissions Vehicle (ILEV) exhaust and evaporative emissions standards
- Further efforts are being made to increase the fuel efficiency of Honda’s fleet of fuel-efficient vehicles that use internal combustion engines such as:
* Lightweighting (using higher percentages of light, high strength steel that improves fuel efficiency through making vehicles lighter without compromising safety).
* Expanding technologies such as Variable Cylinder Management (added to the MY ’09 Pilot) in which cylinders are deactivated based on driving conditions, therefore increasing fuel economy.
- Through its “Green Factory” initiative, Honda is working to reduce the environmental impact of its manufacturing activities, including ongoing efforts to reduce energy use, water use, generation of waste materials, CO2 and air emissions. Through its “Green Purchasing” program, the company is also encouraging its more than 600 North American original-equipment suppliers to adopt similar practices.
In addition to reducing the environmental impact of its own operations, Honda is always looking for ways to make positive contributions to the communities where it does business. Many of these efforts focus on community-based environmental education, preservation and restoration efforts, in the form of corporate charitable giving foundation giving, in-kind contributions, and company support of volunteer efforts by Honda associates who want to take an active role in their communities. The following are just four examples of the many different environmental education programs Honda is involved with:
2. Name 3 media outlets through which your company promoted environmental awareness in 2008 to consumers. These can include print, online or broadcast.
In addition to all of the traditional automotive press, Honda has engaged other media outside of automotive press to help promote our alternative fuel vehicles. These include the Discovery Channel, FOX Business News/Bloomberg, and NPR. These outreach efforts to a wide mix of audiences are important as Honda tries to engage the public with the various environmental initiatives and products we are developing.
3. Cite the progress your company has made with in-production eco-friendly, alternative energy vehicles i.e.: hybrid, diesel, solar powered, flex-fuel, natural gas, electric, ethanol and other.
Not only will Honda introduce a brand new dedicated Hybrid Vehicle, the Insight, in 2009, but it will also introduce a new high-efficiency, 4-cylinder clean diesel engine that achieves U.S. EPA Tier 2 Bin 5 emissions levels. This engine uses a unique NOx reduction catalyst that turns NOx into harmless nitrogen (N2) - all without the need for onboard urea storage. Honda has also announced it will be introducing a small sporty hybrid based on the CRZ concept and a Fit Hybrid in the near future.
Honda has achieved and is committing to maintaining a minimum 90 percent level of design recyclability for all Honda and Acura automobiles, and a minimum 95 percent level of design recyclability for all power sports and power equipment products. All new Honda and Acura automobiles, beginning in 2004, have met or exceeded the 90-percent target. We will continue to look for new ways to improve the design recyclability of future products, in balance with other critical considerations, such as product quality, efficiency and durability.
Honda is actively marketing flex-fuel vehicles in Brazil (Civic models that run on either sugar cane-based ethanol or gasoline), expanding its global offerings of alternative fuel vehicles.
4. Name 3 environmental organizations with which your company has partnerships and why.
- The Nature Conservancy - through its volunteer watershed protection programs, Honda believes protecting sensitive areas like wetlands are critical to supporting healthy ecosystems and reflects our commitment to the protecting sensitive habitats.
- Student Conservation Association (SCA) – by supporting the SCA’s efforts with desert restoration and forest fire mitigation projects in NC, FL and MI, Honda is helping to support efforts that preserve the health and natural balance in our state and national deserts and forests.
- The Gladys Porter Zoo Seat Turtle Conservation Program (Brownsville, Texas) – through the donation of product and support, Honda helps the field portion of the joint U.S.-Mexico effort to protect and increase the production of Kemp's Ridley sea turtles. This project has resulted in one of the most successful programs in which an endangered species has been brought back from the edge of extinction.
Other groups include:
- Living Lands & Waters Foundation, a group of volunteers cleans the Mississippi and Illinois River
- The River Project operates a private monitoring station at Pier 26 of New York’s Hudson River
- Tampa Baywatch is dedicated to the protection and restoration of the Tampa Bay Estuary
- The Chesapeake Bay Foundation works to reduce pollution, improve fisheries, and protect wetlands & forests
- The Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper uses advocacy, education and research to protect\preserve the river
- With assistance from Honda, San Francisco Baykeepers launched the first boat to run on clean-burning CNG
- Ducks Unlimited conserves, restores and manages wetlands and associated wildlife habitats
- South River Federation works to preserve the South River in Maryland
- Aquatic Adventures Science Education Foundation in San Diego provides educational programs
- The Chicago Botanic Garden Center for Teaching and Learning uses its 23 gardens for teaching
- National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council and Tread Lightly, which seek to educate riders about
designated trail use and responsible riding.
5. What progress has your company made in reducing global warming?
Global climate change and energy sustainability are the two most serious and difficult environmental challenges that we as a society faces today. Honda’s recognizes its responsibility to help meet these challenges and is committed to continuing efforts aimed at minimizing its environmental footprint, with a particular emphasis on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. The greatest opportunity to reduce CO2 emissions from Honda products will come by improving the energy-efficiency of those products and of the factories that produce them. Together these factors account for roughly 80 percent of a Honda products’ life-cycle CO2 emissions. In May 2006 Honda established for itself a series of voluntary targets for the reduction of CO2 emission intensity from Honda products and production operations, on a global basis, by 2010. Our overall goal is to manufacture products with the lowest in-use CO2 emissions at manufacturing plants with the lowest C02 emissions intensity (emissions per unit of production).