In 2020, Volvo Bil’s various operations took further steps and important measures to achieve the company’s sustainability targets up to 2021. Quality and environmental work is an ongoing process in Volvo Bil. Our ISO certification according to requirements in ISO 14001:2015 is confirmation of our dedication to the environment and sustainability.
Volvo Bil Torslanda has been running a pilot project since the start of 2019 involving a charging station with two second-life batteries from plug-in hybrids. These store the energy generated by 100 m2 solar panels. The strategy means the batteries are given a second life after their service life in our vehicles. Since they are in a stationary environment free from stresses in a moving vehicle and have gentler charging cycles, the service life of the batteries can be extended by many years. The Second Life strategy can be summed up in three words: Remanufacturing, reuse and recycling. The station in Torslanda is a proof-of-concept pilot project to attain a so-called circular energy flow, where solar power generates energy for interim storage in the batteries, which then charge vehicle batteries.
Volvo Bil has reduced its solvent emissions from coatings by approximately 300 kg per year, because we now have the knowledge to carry out so-called spot repairs, which do not require coating. Every year Volvo Bil repaired approximately 4,500 so-called pet-dents – repairing dents on vehicle panels which does not require coating, resulting in reduced emissions.
Volvo Bil only makes use of Volvo Cars logistics and transport for goods to and from its facilities. Since the vehicles are only driven fully laden, emissions have been minimized. Furthermore, Volvo Cars only uses vehicles with a Euro 6 rating.
When ordering a Volvo car rental fleet, the goal is for at least 30% of the vehicles to be electric hybrids, with a target of 10% lower fossil fuel consumption. This year’s order had 30 electric hybrids out of 45 vehicles (67%).
Volvo Bil has expanded its waste water treatment systems at a number of car washes (Lundby and Torslanda and tire cleaning in Tuve). In the very near future – before 2020 – we will be 50% below the set limit values for 2021. In addition, the car washes only use chemicals carrying the Nordic Swan ecolabel.
An important part of Volvo Bil’s environmental efforts is to reduce our own energy consumption. In 2020, we will continue to hunt down electricity thieves and major electricity consumers. Focus remains on entrances, lights, hot water, saunas, heaters and radiators, etc. Switching to LED lighting is another area in which we are actively working. Our maximum consumption per sold hour shall be 25 kW. In April 2019, we introduced a new clear coat in the coating workshop which cures at lower temperature, and we do not have to use so much electricity in our painting booths. Furthermore, we do not need to heat water from the district heating supplier.
In 2020, Volvo Bil will only stock environmentally-certified bags and always offer customers paper bags. We are reassessing our use of single-use plastics with the goal and ambition to eliminate these from our operations.
Volvo Bil lists all the chemicals used in the business, and the chemicals are assessed and approved by VCC and registered in the Chemsoft system. Volvo Cars always strives for the lowest possible environmental impact on nature and people. In 2019 and 2020, we will be working actively to reduce the number of products we use in the business. All chemicals are re-assessed every 5 years.
Volvo Bil has a long-term undertaking when it comes to waste sorting, with the goal of reducing the amount of waste sent to landfills by 50% by 2021. Waste sorting is being steadily improved and adheres to the new ISO 14001 standard. Over the 2019-2021 period, the sorting of metals, electronics, rubber, plastics, and glass will become increasingly thorough. This means we have to be even better at dismantling and separating materials, and then sorting them into their respective containers. All end-of-life telephones (electronics) will also be returned to the IT department for separate recycling.
All printers at Volvo Bil have duplex printing as the default setting. We are also printing fewer and fewer documents, and utilizing Revolve and SharePoint for governing documents and reports. We have been sorting documents, paper and packaging materials for many years. Each ton of recycled paper spares approx. 12 trees. Volvo Bil recycles approx. 91,321 kg per year, which corresponds to 1 092 trees.
Damage technicians at Tuve always contact JB bildemontering to find out whether they have any used spare parts that can be used to repair a vehicle lacking collision cover. This means that any parts used have already been manufactured, which is beneficial from an environmental standpoint.
In 2019, Volvo Bil carried out approx. 3,000 rim repairs, 3,500 upholstery repairs, and approx. 50 headlamp repairs. If the expertise to repair these components had not existed, they would have needed to be replaced, resulting in new material extraction and a larger volume of waste which would have needed to be recycled.
The company establishes quantified environmental targets each year. One of these relates to material returns to Volvo Cars customer service, which shall not exceed 5% of ongoing orders. The percentage of returned materials in 2019 amounted to 4.9%.
Volvo Bil works together with Stena Recycling to identify sustainable waste solutions with higher recycling rates. Iron, aluminum, plastic, paper, and all other sorted waste at Volvo Bil is sent to Stena Recycling, which recycles the materials for new uses. This means we save both resources and energy. Volvo Bil’s recycling efforts correspond to CO2 emissions savings of 685 tons per year, as shown in the diagram below. Stena Metall collects sorted materials from 17 Volvo Bil sorting stations.
Volvo Bil’s recycling efforts have enabled recycled materials to be used instead of adding new raw materials to production, which saves both resources and energy. Recycling at Volvo Bil corresponds to the CO2 emissions savings per month above, and a total for the period between 01/04/2019 and 31/03/2020 equal to 685 ton.
Volvo Bil has an agreement with Vattenfall and only buys green electricity, this is 100% renewable energy that is only made with hydropower.
Volvo Bil's step in the important sustainability work. Read more here (PDF)