Delphi Mexico's New Green Efforts

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Delphi Mexico's New Green Efforts

A focus on the future sparks new and ongoing environmental initiatives at Delphi plants in Mexico.

Environmental stewardship is key at Delphi's global manufacturing sites where continuous improvement of environmental operations is a primary focus. Every day, Delphi is working hard to develop initiatives designed to minimize environmental impact and reduce Delphi's global footprint. Throughout its facilities in Mexico, being "green" is more than just a management philosophy — it's a way of life — a way of life for all employees that includes recycling, waste reduction, and energy reduction activities.

"Delphi is committed to developing economically feasible projects that positively impact the environment," said Domingo Arellano, Delphi's director for Global Operations Americas. "Whether it's production refinements or community events, that sense of responsibility, of stewardship, is shared and modeled by Delphi employees in all of our facilities."

Juarez — RBE IV Goes Green With Purple Line

Delphi's RBEIV plant is the first among many Delphi Mexico plants to use water from the Purple Line in restroom toilets and for watering green spaces.

Delphi RBE (Río Bravo Eléctricos) IV has joined a water recycling initiative in Juarez, colorfully named the Purple Line, after the color of water lines supplying the treated water. Municipal water used by the Delphi plant originates in the HuecoBolson and ConejosMedanos aquifers where high pumping rates combined with the low recharge of a desert climate has caused dramatic water level declines. The Purple Line, developed by the city's municipal water utilities department (JMAS), helps conserve Mexico's scarce natural resources by reducing potable water usage and offering, at a lower cost, treated municipal wastewater for specific industrial uses.

Water from the Purple Line is treated and approved for several industrial uses — but not human consumption — making it a less costly, environmentally-friendly alternative for industry. Delphi RBE IV will use the treated water in restroom toilets and for lawn and garden irrigation, replacing about 30% of its total water usage with the treated water. The effort will save approximately 19,000 gallons (71,923 liters) of potable water each year and significantly reduce water costs at the plant.

In addition to its initial efforts, Delphi hopes to continue extending the use of treated wastewater to other Juarez Electrical/Electronic Architecture (E/EA) and Powertrain facilities as the Purple Line expands into other parts of the city.

"It is important to create a culture of environmental awareness in Juarez," said Arellano. "Delphi is proud to lead the way and set an example for industry by being among the first to use treated wastewater."

Celebrating the Reforestation of a City — Social Responsibility

Various Delphi Mexico plants in Juarez hosted a community event on March 31, called Norte Verde (North Green Tree), in conjunction with the City of Juarez' reforestation initiative. Delphi employees distributed seedlings with planting and care instructions to the participants and organized activities for children. The program was designed to convey the social and community benefits of reforestation to residents near the plants while increasing environmental awareness.

Delphi was proud to receive recognition from the Norte de Cd. Juarez newspaper for being a sponsor and participant on the "Norte Verde" reforestation project. The company was commended for making the city a better place to live and for having a strong sense of social responsibility.

3-RBE Plants Exhibit Environmental Leadership

Improved recycling efforts at three Delphi Packard E/EA plants in 2011, RBE IV, RBE V, and RBE VII, earned Delphi the Environmental Leadership Award from Mexico's environmental oversight agency, SEMARNAT (Secretaréa de MedioAmbiente y RecursosNaturales). The three plants instituted recycling of plastic scrap, including PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and PPE (polyphenyleneether) generated during production operations, dramatically reducing the amount of waste being landfilled each year:

  • RBE IV plant is saving 10,582 pounds (4.8 metric tons) of waste
  • RBE V plant is saving 37,038 pounds (16.8 metric tons) of waste
  • RBE VII plant is saving 297,625 pounds (135 metric tons) of waste

This cost-effective recycling measure reduced the total annual amount of landfill waste from the three plants by more than 346,000 pounds (157 metric tons) — equivalent to the waste produced by 429 people every year.

In addition to the scrap plastics recycling efforts at RBE IV, V, and VII, Delphi plants in Mexico recycle and reuse containers and conduct recycling of cardboard and paper waste. In total, 1,701,968 pounds (772,000 kg) of cardboard and 8,818 pounds (4,000 kg) of paper are recycled quarterly with proceeds from these efforts funding human service projects in the local communities.

Delphi E&S Plants Receive Honors

Two Delphi Electronics & Safety plants, Deltronicos in Matamoros and Delnorte in Reynosa recently received "Green Factory Environmental Achievement Recognition" from Honda of America. The award, part of Honda's global initiative to reduce the impact of manufacturing on the environment, is presented to parts suppliers in North America that have excelled at conserving natural resources, reducing energy use and eliminating waste to landfills.

The awards for environmental stewardship were presented at Honda's 19th annual Environmental, Safety and Ergonomics Symposium in Ohio. The Delnorte plant was recognized for multiple recycling and source reduction activities eliminating more than 500,000 pounds (226,796 kg) of landfill waste. The Deltronicos plant — recognized for energy-savings activities such as changing chilled water setpoints and improved equipment utilization — reduced electricity use in the plant by more than 3 million kWh per year, enough to power 275 U.S. households.

Delphi's Delnorte and Deltronicos manufacturing plants were also recognized in 2011 for achievements in the protection of the environment in the context of social responsibility by Mexico's National Council of the Maquiladora Industry and Export Manufacturing (CNIMME).

Clean Industry Qualification Earned

Delphi's Mexico operations are gaining regional recognition for carefully-designed, finely-tuned manufacturing processes emphasizing energy-efficiency and waste reduction/recycling. In 2011, several plants were audited and earned recertification under the Environmental Performance Report for federal Clean Industry program (IndustriaLimpia) designed to encourage business decisions that protect the environment in a comprehensive manner beyond the law.

Energy-savings Across Mexico

Delphi is focused on minimizing its environmental impact by using energy from renewable resources. Eleven Delphi plants across Mexico have replaced 30% of their electric energy needs with energy from renewable resources, a move that saves both natural resources and dollars.

"The cost of electric power has significant impact on the operations of Delphi Mexico. The energy market environment, generally with an upward trend, also impacts our operations' competitiveness," said Arellano. "That is why the global operations group in Mexico has been looking for lower cost, sustainable energy alternatives with reduced environmental impact."

Delphi's increased reliance on renewable energy sources is saving precious natural resources equivalent to:

  • Saving 812,000 trees
  • Reducing emissions from 25,054 compact cars
  • Eliminating energy consumption of 27,300 average homes in Mexico

As a result of these energy-saving measures, Delphi's Mexico plants have also reduced electricity costs by 3 to 5%.

About Delphi

Protecting human health, natural resources, and the environment in which we live is a commitment Delphi and its employees take seriously. It begins with a mindset — a global commitment — that focuses on the future while meeting today's challenges. As an industry leader in sustainable manufacturing and products, Delphi demonstrates environmental stewardship by developing real-world innovations that help customers reduce their impact on the environment as well.

Read about Delphi's global commitment to environmental stewardship in other areas such as Brazil.

Learn more at delphi com.