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What Goes In: Chevy’s New EcoLogic Certification

by Jarrod Denson

When it comes to things I buy, I have a tendency to focus on labels. Organic, natural, all natural, low carb, low fat, low alkaline, free range, free trade, gluten-free, cruelty-free, extra fiber, vitamin-enriched and vegan-friendly, along with many others, have all caught my eye while perusing the lanes of my grocery store, poking my head into a crowded stall at a farmer’s market, or sitting in the eerie light of my laptop, stalking the pages of Amazon in the middle of the night. I don’t claim to be a strict follower of any particular label, or even really to know what they all mean. I know there are lots of things I should look for my products to have or not have, but I couldn’t begin to tell you what they all are.

Despite this, labels still influence my purchases in an odd, almost subconscious way. This label-love is something that Chevrolet hopes to capitalize on in the future with their new EcoLogic scorecard. The label, like USDA Certified Organic or Leaping Bunny’s cruelty-free certification, is a third-party audited certification that shows a certain level of accountability in the manufacturing of the product. The difference—besides the fact that the folks at Chevy took it upon themselves to create the scorecard—is that the EcoLogic scorecard displays the various ways that their vehicles lessen their impact on the environment.

The scorecard displays such interesting tidbits as:

  • 85% by weight of some Chevy vehicles (Sonic, Malibu, etc.) are recyclable
  • Landfill gas powers more than 20% of their assembly
  • Many of their transmissions and engines are landfill-free

As well as various ways that these eco-features benefit the consumer:

  • Landfill gas means assembly facilities are less dependant on fossil fuels
  • Landfill-free parts means less waste and more resources
  • Recycling parts reduces landfill deposits and conserves resources.

These are some great numbers, and Chevy’s commitment to providing their customers with knowledge about their product is more than commendable. Creating their own “organic car” label is an insightful way to get this information out to the people who want to see it, including those of us who are looking to buy a car but may not be able to shell out the money for a hybrid or an EV. The EcoLogic scorecard shows potential car buyers all the other things that their friendly neighborhood car company is doing to help the environment that can’t be measured in miles per gallon.

This being said, some of these facts can be a bit misleading, particularly numbers that account for how recyclable their vehicles are. According to the United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR), more than 95% of all end-of-life cars—including Chevy and most of its competitors—are already being recycled with absolutely no cost to consumers or taxpayers. USCAR also states, “More than 84 percent, by weight, of each end-of-life vehicle is recycled.”




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