Monday, October 25, 2010

Japanese car maker steps up efforts to reduce carbon footprint

There are more ways than just making enviro cars to be environmentally friendly....
By Abigail L. Ho
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines—Recognizing that vehicles are big contributors to pollution, Honda Cars Philippines Inc. is stepping up efforts to reduce its own carbon footprint by implementing various environment-saving measures in its Sta. Rosa, Laguna manufacturing facility.

In a speech during the celebration of the company's 20th anniversary, Honda Philippines president and general manager Hiroshi Shimizu said that from 2006, the car manufacturer had slashed carbon emissions from its production activities by as much as 20 percent.

This was achieved through the implementation of energy demand side management activities, as well as energy efficiency and conservation measures, including the conduct of energy audits
and the installation of energy-efficient equipment and lighting systems.

Shimizu related that the company has also embarked on a waste reduction program that aimed to eliminate manufacturing-related wastes by next year.

Efforts directed at achieving this goal included the reduction and segregation of various waste products, the use of recyclable packaging for the parts that it exports, and the treatment of its hazardous waste materials through cement kiln technology.

Honda Motor Co., the car maker's Japanese parent, is constantly conducting research on automotive technologies that will reduce carbon emissions.

Michio Shinohara, general manager of Honda's environment and safety planning office, said the company was working hard to accelerate the rollout of vehicle models using electromotive technologies.

"The shift to electromotive technologies is one of the most effective ways to reduce carbon emissions,'' he said.

Honda earlier in the year launched a real-world demonstration program of its electric motorcycles and automobiles, in cooperation with Japan's Kumamoto and Saitama prefectures.

These personal mobility products, powered by electromotive technology, were used in a mainstream urban setting to determine the effectiveness of such vehicles under normal driving conditions and to study how the future urban transportation system should be designed to provide the most improvement to overall quality of life.

Honda also sells hybrid vehicles in other markets, but is not inclined to do so until after 2013, when the tariff on such vehicles go down to zero under the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement.


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