Local Ford plant recycles all manufacturing, production waste

Metro Detroit Ford plant recycles all manufacturing, production waste

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Workers collect plastic for recycling at Ford's Van Dyke Transmission Plant in Sterling Heights.  (Credit: Fox 2 News) Workers collect plastic for recycling at Ford's Van Dyke Transmission Plant in Sterling Heights. (Credit: Fox 2 News)
STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. (WJBK) -

Ford's 2.2 million square foot Van Dyke Transmission Plant covers 145 acres in Sterling Heights, and as you can imagine, it generates tons of waste during the process of making transmissions for the Taurus, Fusion, Explorer and other vehicles.

Dave Lewis, an environmental engineer with the automaker, said none of the waste generated at the plant goes to a landfill.

"What we've achieved in our plant is all manufacturing and production waste [is] now recycled," he explained.

This is Ford's first North American transmission plant with that distinction.  There are 13 others worldwide.

Lewis showed us the various materials being recycled.  They include adhesive, aluminum chips shaved off during manufacturing, plastic, fabric coolant filters and chalk used in the filtration process.

Their efforts are part of the automaker's global waste reduction strategy to keep 40 percent of waste per vehicle out of landfills by 2016.  That is a little more than 13 pounds per vehicle.  It's a green initiative the company and local workers are proud of.

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