In a world with finite resources, everyone has the opportunity to protect our shared future through sustainable choices. When Ford looks towards that future, it envisions all of us living, playing and working in a Greentopia.
Let’s take a second to break that down, as Greentopia is not a term many people encounter on a daily basis. Green is used in the environmental sense, not the color, and topia comes from the Greek word for place. So a Greentopia is a place where the environment is thriving.
More and more people become invested in the health of the environment, because green acts big and small all make a difference. And they have another benefit, too: a recent Ford survey revealed that 86 percent of people feel good about themselves for recycling.
In the past, we’ve shared some of the ways that Ford is making a difference in the environment. But there are several more initiatives the company is undertaking that are going further.
Ford has long been an industry leader in the use of recycled material, dating back to Henry Ford’s innovative use of soybeans. The company now requires that all new North American-based vehicle programs use seat fabric with at least 25 percent recycled content. At the moment, Ford uses 41 fabrics with recycled content across 15 vehicle programs, drawing on recycled material derived from a variety of sources.
When you think of recycling, you might think of bottles. Well, Ford does too: the seat fabric in each new Fusion contains the equivalent of up to about 40 recycled bottles, and exemplifies how the company works with suppliers to incorporate recycled content when possible. To keep costs down, Ford designers arranged for waste generated during the manufacture of seat fabric to be recycled and incorporated into new seat fabric.
The recycled materials used aren’t just traditional ones, though. Ford researchers are on the lookout for untapped sources of materials to extend the company’s commitment to sustainability while maintaining the highest level of quality.
That means looking for materials in unconventional places, like retired paper currency, which is being tested for potential use in select Ford components for some vehicles. The paper’s tensile strength gives it the potential to meet Ford quality standards, and the estimated 3.6 million pounds of currency retired and shredded annually would provide a steady supply.
Creating a Greentopia means looking at what we now think of as trash in a new light. What waste or recycled product could Ford integrate into its future designs? Share your greenest ideas in the comments below.