Building and adopting electric cars are an essential component in reducing C02 emissions. But, automakers can’t ignore what goes on behind the curtain in producing these cars. If the energy required for manufacturing comes from “dirty” sources, then it defeats part of the purpose.
In matters of addressing environmental concerns, Honda means business. It takes its vision of “Blue Skies for our Children” seriously, forging a leadership position and setting an example for other automakers. In 2015, Honda Transmission Mfg. of America, Inc. (HTM) scored a coveted first by becoming the first major automotive manufacturing plant in the US to source a considerable amount of electricity from wind turbines on its property. The Ohio-based facility can now claim another accolade.
HTM was just awarded U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) ENERGY STAR certification, the first automotive transmission plant to do so. Introduced in 1992, ENERGY STAR is a voluntary accreditation awarded to the top 25 percent of buildings nationwide, based on weather-normalized sourced energy performance. And ENERGY STAR verifies the numbers before providing certification. Even more impressive for Honda, ENERGY STAR just tightened up its guidelines.
HTM gets more than 10 percent of its power from two 1.7MW turbines on its property. It also increases efficiency with a rigorous utility scheduling and monitoring program. Though 10% might not seem like a big number, it’s significant. Especially when you consider the 1.1-million square-foot HTM plant manufactures more than 850,000 transmissions per year, as well as gear sets, transfer cases and differentials for four-wheel drive vehicles.
Honda has set the goal of electric vehicles making up two-thirds of global sales by 2030. With its track record so far, optimism remains high that it will actually happen.