An Auto-matic Supply Chain
Guest contributor: Kaity Nakagoshi
Leaders of the Pack
The leaders in terms of energy efficiency models can shed some light on promising new designs.
· Toyota's Prius is the first gasoline-electric hybrid which has been mass-produced. The Prius gets 51 mpg in urban areas and 48 mpg outside of the city. Toyota's North American Environmental Report states that the car has saved over 900 million gallons of gas and 14 million tons of carbon emissions.
· GM has decreased manufacturing emissions by 60% since 1990. GM's Chevy Volt allows for 50 miles of purely electric driving from one charge, and after this a small gasoline generator creates electricity for 300 miles more of driving time.
· BMW has created a new distribution center in Munich which reduces the carbon footprint caused by manufacturing. The building utilizes solar power and natural ventilation systems through well-placed vents and thermal currents.
Driving the Job Market
As the industry leaders strive to meet green standards, new jobs are being created. Over 150,000 workers in the U.S. are employed for the purpose of improving production of cars and trucks. Michigan, Ohio, and North Carolina are among the leading states in employing those who work toward a green supply chain. These jobs arise due to the demanding vehicle efficiency standards which are currently driving sustainable innovation forward.
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One Step Further
As manufacturers strive to improve their standards while maintaining profitability along the supply chain, some are gaining assistance from energy efficiency alliances. There is a Midwest, Northwest and Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance as well as other groups such as the Sustainability Consortium. Each of these organizations work with businesses to aid in the rapid development of efficient products. Such organizations help with collaboration between governments, business and utility companies, as well as providing current knowledge on regulations and innovative initiatives.
Overall, the auto industry supply chain will be a leader in the upcoming years when it comes to the development of green practices. As consumers increasingly accept the eco-friendly lifestyle as a normal way of life, the reputations of major auto companies can only benefit from discovering profitability in green design. The leaders in the industry are already pushing ahead. Supply chain management will only continue to streamline and advance with the latest alternative strategies.