Hackernoon logoThree Ways the Auto Industry Is Responding to the Environmental Crisis by@samanthalee1440

Three Ways the Auto Industry Is Responding to the Environmental Crisis

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@samanthalee1440Samantha Hager

The automotive industry is one that, for decades, has been on the opposing side of a treacherous battle for environmental health. However, with Elon Musk and many others dedicated to the eco-friendly world of green business becoming leaders in the automotive industry, it is no surprise that the manufacturers, fuel companies, major cities, and scientists of our world have now begun to work hand in hand with the auto industry to create a brighter future and greener world, one step at a time.

However, with so many parts of the auto industry being influenced, three rarely recognized aspects of the industryโ€™s involvement in the green initiative are may make a far larger impact than you may think in the long run. Therefore, by reviewing these three elements, we can see just how the auto industry is making a difference and what this will mean for our world and our future generations overall. After all, every road less traveled is bumpy at first, but, after a few passes, even the rockiest of roads will form a path ahead.

1)Green Production

The manufacturing of cars has been one aspect of the auto industry where green business practices have been lacking for years now. However, in the last five years, car manufacturing has made a significant transition into the green initiative by incorporating far more recyclable materials into car production, choosing fuel alternatives that allow companies to reduce their fossil fuel intakes, and making car parts that are overall more reliable and eco-friendly.

When it comes to more recyclable materials that save fuel economy, we can quickly look back on my previous article on aluminum and its impact on the auto industry. Because aluminum is so lightweight and malleable, this means that it can be used to manufacture any car, reduces the fuel intake of said cars, and also is easily recyclable likewise. Although cars can not be completely comprised of aluminum for safety concerns, it is estimated that, by 2025, cars will be comprised of roughly 550 pounds of aluminum. This will ultimately lead to a far more efficient, cheaper, and more environmentally friendly mode of transportation that can be quickly recycled and redistributed likewise.

Furthermore, in the case of fuel alternatives, it is clear that many car companies have begun to turn to electric power and various other forms of fuel so as to reduce their carbon footprint and the sheer amount of oil used daily by the American population. In fact, going back to aluminum, a new revolutionary aluminum-air battery is said to be capable of 1,000 miles gas-free before needing to be recharged. With this said, not only would this reduce the need for fuel drastically, but it would also save time for the average American and reduce the amount of times in which an individual finds themselves stuck on the side of the road without gas. On top of this, to reduce this risk even further, it is said that there will be quick-charge devices which individuals will be able to purchase to quickly give their cars a boost, even when there are no charging stations nearby.

Lastly, the parts a car needs can often be comprised of materials that are not easy to recycle, wind up sitting for decades in a junkyard, and break easily after a few years worth of use. Therefore, many car part companies have joined the green initiative by simply providing parts materials that are eco-friendly, recyclable, and durable. For instance, currently, tires are going eco-friendly by using durable green materials. This allows for the average consumer to purchase green tires that are durable for the same price, if not less, than other non-green alternatives.

In the end, the manufacturing portion of the auto industry has truly embraced the green message and instilled this initiative in every part of the car production procedure. However, this is far from the only thing the auto industry has done to help reduce the carbon emissions and negative environmental impacts it has created over the years, and, perhaps, its help within the urban communities of our nation are truly where they shine.

2) Lowering Urban Temperatures

With a myriad of scientists and the auto industry backing them, various urban communities have begun to paint their massive asphalt streets completely white in order to reduce the amount of heat built up on city streets. In fact, the auto industry titans say theyโ€™re still committed to cutting emissions despite Trump claiming to want to curb the laws protecting the environment. Although it may not seem like much, doing this has been proven to significantly reduce the heat levels of the city which not only helps the environment by providing a temperate city life where vegetation can survive once more but also by reducing how many individuals turn to air conditioning for relief from the exhausting heat.

The truth is that air conditioning devices both in cars and homes emit outrageous levels of carbon, which builds up in our atmosphere and destroys our ozone each and every day. By reducing the heat in a given city, you can reduce these carbon emissions drastically. You can also help improve fuel economy since the rubber of the car tires will no longer stick to the hot asphalt causing drag which actually significantly lowers your fuel economy over time. Lastly, you can reduce the amount of cars on the road as well since people will be more apt to choose a bike or walking if the weather is permissible.

So far, it has been proven that these white streets can actually reduce the temperature of a city by over 44 degrees fahrenheit, which means that record heat could quickly be comparable to a slightly warm day. With this said, we could reduce the amount of cars on the road, increase vegetation, encourage alternative forms of transportation, and reduce the amount of air conditioning units being utilized on any given day for nothing more than a large amount of white paint and some dedicated workers to apply it. However, just as it is important to stop existing conditions before they get worse, the auto industry has also begun to take preventive actions likewise that could help us rid ourselves of issues before they ever even occur.

3) Supporting GPR Risk Assessment Initiatives

For those that are unaware of what GPR is, ground penetrating radar ultimately gives scientists a picture of whatโ€™s beneath the earthโ€™s surface. However, the environmental applications of ground penetrating radar are truly what makes it so interesting to the auto industry and scientists nationwide fighting the environmental crisis.

The reason for this is because of the fact that GPR allows scientists to assess landfill limits, map the extent of contamination plumes, and determine the direction of contaminant migration as well. Because of this, scientists are able to recognize when contaminants are affecting our environment and determine exactly how to solve these issues before they become serious concerns.

Furthermore, this allows the auto industry to recognize where they need to recycle the most so as to reduce the amount of cars found in landfills and reduce the sheer amount of carbon emissions these landfills create each and every day. From there, the auto industry can begin to recycle older cars in a more effective way, transform these cars into new, aluminum-prominent cars, and create a future of cars that is far more recyclable than ever before.

In the end, the auto industry is one that has truly recognized the faults in its ways and made a change for the better. As each step in the right direction is taken and each aspect of the auto industry receives a new, green look, the consumers of today slowly become the testers of the products of tomorrowโ€Šโ€”โ€Šand the rocky road less traveled slowly becomes more and more reliable as each day passes.


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