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As manufacturing continues to become greener, Ford Motor Company is going further to shrink its environmental footprint by sharing even more leading sustainability practices with its suppliers around the globe.

The Partnership for A Cleaner Environment (PACE) is part of Ford’s environmental commitment. While many sustainability practices already have been implemented at the company’s manufacturing sites, Ford has expanded the program now to include tools that help suppliers reduce carbon-dioxide emissions and waste, as well as help make water and energy consumption more efficient.

Last year, a second select group of suppliers were invited to join the voluntary program, bringing the number of participating companies to more than 40 in two years. PACE now has the potential to impact nearly 1,100 supplier sites in more than 40 countries.

As part of PACE, Ford offers best practices and monitoring tools to help its suppliers track and achieve their own sustainability goals. In return, the suppliers report their environmental progress and share their own best practices. Already, participating suppliers are on track to save an estimated 550 million gallons of water over the next five years – enough to fill 837 Olympic swimming pools– according to data collected in 2016.

Thanks to the current suppliers participating in PACE, carbon emissions could be reduced by nearly 500,000 metric tons worldwide during the next five years.

Leading practices make perfect

Recognizing sustainability is an ongoing commitment, Ford is providing suppliers with a PACE toolkit, complete with more than 350 leading practices across four categories: energy, water, air emissions and waste.

While varying in effort, leading practices include optimizing cooling tower operation, reducing compressed air usage in manufacturing operations and eliminating single-pass cooling systems.

In addition to larger scale projects, even the simplest leading practices, such as replacing incandescent lightbulbs with LED bulbs, also will help conserve valuable resources.

Taking a bigger step to leave a smaller footprint

Ultimately, sharing its impact on environmental sustainability with suppliers has the potential to affect millions around the world.

PACE is just one portion of Ford’s supply chain sustainability strategy, which also includes initiatives on human rights, working conditions and conflict minerals.

Published in the May 2017 Edition of American Recycler News