Gap Score: -2.9
Perception: NEW
  • In 2013, General Motors realized energy-efficiency improvements of 3% from 2012, while carbon emissions intensity decreased 2% and renewable energy use increased. Over the next few years, GM will be investing up to $40 million in projects that will help reduce up to 8 million metric tons of CO2 from the atmosphere.

  • Currently, more than half GM’s manufacturing facilities are landfill-free, bringing its total count to 85. On average, 97% of the waste generated from everyday manufacturing operations at these plants is recycled or reused, and 3% is converted to energy.

  • GM reduced water intensity 5% for 2013, keeping on track to realize its 15% reduction goal by 2020 compared to a 2010 baseline.

  • Chevrolet Equinox fuel cell vehicles recently passed 3 million miles of hydrogen-powered, real-world driving. By GM’s estimate, using hydrogen to power these vehicles, the fleet has avoided 157,894 gallons of gasoline consumption.

Working Together

In July, 2013, GM and Honda announced a long-term collaboration to co-develop next-generation fuel cell and hydrogen storage systems, aiming for potential commercialization in the 2020 time frame. The two brands are also working together with stakeholders to advance refueling infrastructure, which is critical for the long-term viability and consumer acceptance of fuel cell vehicles. Also in 2013, GM joined with Detroit Renewable Energy to turn solid municipal waste from the metropolitan Detroit area into process steam that will be used to heat and cool portions of its Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, home of the Chevrolet Volt. When the project is operational, 58% of the plant’s energy needs will come from renewable energy, which would make it the top GM facility in the world by percentage of renewable energy used. This agreement also eliminates the use of coal, saves money, and reduces GHG emissions by 57,000 metric tons.

The Green Advantage

GM and, with it, Chevrolet, is clearly committed to creating brand value through an improvement in the brand’s sustainable performance. From a commitment to reduce energy usage across the organization to producing leading alternative fuel cars, such as VOLT, to hydrogen development partnerships with Honda and the U.S. Army, GM is committed to sustainability as a long-term business approach. Broadly defined to include environmental, social, and economic issues, sustainability at GM is integral to policies, initiatives, and efforts across the entire company; all of it pinned on transparency, trust, and accountability. As a way to drive employee engagement and spur innovation, sustainability is embraced throughout GM with close alignment to the business model to ensure long-term commitment and return.


GM Sustainability
GM and Honda fuel cell development partnership
Carbon Reduction Initiative