The Czech brand continues to invest in sustainability, with the objective of making its plants’ energy consumption for vehicle and component production CO2-neutral by the second half of this decade.
ŠKODA is consistently optimising the ecological footprint of its cars – from the extraction of the raw materials required through to the end of their life cycle. Now, however, the company has taken another leap forward: since the start of 2020, it has recycled all waste produced during manufacturing.
“As a car manufacturer, we have a particular responsibility to set a good example in terms of sustainability. We have reached the next milestone in our ‘GreenFuture’ strategy, specifically in the ‘GreenFactory’ sub-section. We are now recycling 100 per cent of all waste generated during vehicle production. This is an important step towards even greater, all-embracing recycling efforts and a clear commitment to strengthening the circular economy”, explains Michael Oeljeklaus, ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Production and Logistics.
Disposing of waste
ŠKODA is also pursuing an eco-friendly approach to waste disposal even if conventional methods would be more economical. To name just one example, the carmaker recovers the material for numerous high quality plastic parts from recycled waste.
In addition, whenever waste is recycled thermally, ŠKODA ensures that the energy released during incineration is used to generate electricity or heat. The brand also collaborates with the Czech Institute for Circular Economy with the aim of developing sophisticated recycling measures.
The new paint shop at the Mladá Boleslav plant uses approximately 210 g less solvent per car, and requires 17 per cent less clear coat than conventional systems, no paint sludge accumulates and the new exhaust air decontamination system reduces the amount of paint residue by more than 2 kg per car body.
ŠKODA has had all its municipal waste incinerated since back in 2016 and also stopped using landfill sites for its commercial waste at the beginning of 2020.
The ŠKODA Academy
The ŠKODA Academy, the company’s technical training centre, is equally committed to environmental protection and the responsible use of natural resources. The C6000 thinner used in technical training can be cleaned using simple distillation, allowing 90 per cent of it to be reused.
The ‘GreenFuture’ strategy
ŠKODA combines its environmental activities in the ‘GreenFuture’ strategy, which is based on three pillars: ‘GreenProduct’ deals with the development of vehicles that are as eco-friendly as possible – in terms of fuel consumption, the materials used and their recyclability; ‘GreenRetail’ promotes eco-friendly operations at its dealerships and service partners; ‘GreenFactoryְ’ brings together all of the activities that help to conserve resources during production.
Key performance indicators such as energy and water consumption and the amount of waste generated are continuously monitored and optimised. The same applies to CO2 emissions and so-called volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are produced when the car bodies are painted.
ŠKODA’s long-term objective is to make its plants’ energy consumption for vehicle and component production CO2-neutral by the second half of this decade.