Optimizing resources: a dual challenge for the automotive industry
In a world of dwindling raw materials, reducing our consumption is both an ecological and economic issue.
That’s why, back in 1995, we began looking for solutions to reduce our impact on the environment and optimize our resource use. The circular economy is one of the solutions we have chosen.
What is the circular economy ?
The circular economy model is based on the natural environment, where everything is reused, composted, digested.
Applied to manufacturing, it means that end-of-life materials and products can supply an industry’s needs in a closed circuit, a “closed loop” that could continue indefinitely.
Designing vehicles containing fewer materials
We are using fewer natural resources in vehicle production by trying whenever possible to replace natural resources with materials that have already been used.
More than 29% of the materials in our new vehicles have been recycled, a proportion we aim to increase to 39% by 2016.
Organizing the “second life” of our parts and vehicles
We are developing solutions to collect parts and transform materials coming from waste so they can be used again.
Indra: a key player in recycling in France, with a network of 400 dismantlers
We are the only European carmaker to have taken stakes in companies that recycle end-of-life vehicles. Indra, a subsidiary owned jointly with Suez Environnement, operates a network of 400 dismantlers that dismantled more than 75,000 vehicles in 2013. The materials are pooled and reusable parts are stocked and then offered at a much lower price to the sales network, which means customers get lower prices, too. The parts are perfectly suited to repair vehicles of any age.
The Choisy-le-Roi plant takes 120 unusable engines and rebuilds 100 engines in perfect condition!
The Choisy-le-Roi plant near Paris illustrates the circular economy approach in its production of standard replacement parts.
Since 1949, six families of products have been remanufactured in the plant. In 2013, 28,200 engines, 20,100 gearboxes and 16,840 injection pumps were reconditioned and given a second life.
Renault has partnered the Ellen MacArthur Foundation since September 2010.
Working with industry and the world of education, the Foundation encourages younger generations to rethink and rebuild a positive and prosperous future informed by the circular economy. As a Foundation partner, Renault develops and shares its know-how with experts and other large companies in the best practices of the circular economy.
Reusing materials in the automotive industry through short-loop recycling
Our objective with the circular economy is not only to recycle the waste that we produce, but also to see that as much as possible is recycled in automobile manufacturing.
We are progressively setting up short loops to recycle raw materials such as steel, copper, textiles, noryl and polypropylene within the automotive industry and as locally as possible.
As part of the initiative, Renault has set up an experimental platform for recycling end-of-life vehicles called ICARRE 95, short for Innovative CAR REcycling 95%.