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Kia Becomes Carbon Neutral In New Zealand

Kia Becomes Carbon Neutral In New Zealand

Fast-growing car company, Kia Motors, is taking active measures in New Zealand to reduce its carbon footprint.

Going beyond simply purchasing carbon credits to offset business activities that harm the environment, the New Zealand arm of Kia Motors has devised a plan aimed at reducing its total emissions footprint, in addition to offsetting.
That plan includes making reductions in freighting its new vehicles to dealers around the country, cutting staff travel and reducing fuel used by the company’s vehicles.

These steps are all part of a programme that has seen Kia Motors NZ successfully gain carboNZeroCertTM certification from carboNZero Holdings Limited, one of the leading certifying agencies for businesses and organisations wanting to make a positive change to their environment-affecting activities.

Todd McDonald, General Manager of Kia Motors New Zealand, says the company takes its environmental responsibilities very seriously around the world.
“We have been encouraged by the way various parts of the Kia Motors global family have made meaningful changes to lower their environmental emissions and cut wastage and we were determined to play our part in New Zealand in a way that would involve more than just offsetting our carbon footprint,” he says.
“When we sat down with carboNZero Holdings, we wanted to know what actions we could take to make reductions that can be measured.”

That process included verifying every facet of the Kia Motors NZ operation for 2011 by carboNZero Holdings’ auditors to establish exactly how much carbon is used in the everyday activities of the company to provide a benchmark for future reductions and mitigation. The study showed that 87% of emissions by Kia Motors NZ were due to freighting vehicles and parts to New Zealand and within its local network. Around 8% of its carbon footprint was due to international and domestic travel by staff members.

Mr McDonald says the fact that Kia relies on shipping vehicles from factories in Asia and Europe and then distributing these to dealerships around the country for its business presents a challenge, but the company is working with its local suppliers on how to consolidate shipments to reduce movements.
As well as targeting freight for carbon reduction, Kia Motors NZ is also focusing on reducing staff travel and fuel consumption and educating staff and suppliers in how to make savings. Kia says it will be able to meet fuel reduction targets because new vehicles being introduced over the next three years will use less petrol and diesel.

To become completely carbon neutral, Kia Motors NZ says it will also need to offset unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions created from its business through purchase of carbon credits.

The current carboNZero certification is valid until the end of 2015, when it will be re-assessed.

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