Nissan launches green scheme

Nissan Motor Company is planning to launch a new fuel-efficient car that runs 100km on three litres of petrol by the end of the decade. The initiative is part of the car company’s recent environmental action plan that includes several goals for reducing CO2 and exhaust emissions and accelerating recycling efforts.


Under the plan, called the Nissan Green Programme 2010, Nissan will accelerate development of technologies that improve the efficiency of conventional petrol powertrains. These more efficient powertrains will help support the development of a three-litre car, which is slated for launch in Japan in 2010.


Other goals mentioned in the programme include the expansion of availability of Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFV) within the next three years and reduction of CO2 emissions from global manufacturing plants by seven percent compared to 2005 by 2010. The plan also calls for the launch of an electric vehicle in the next decade.


In the early part of the next decade, Nissan will launch the next generation fuel cell vehicle with its own in-house developed stack and a battery-powered electric vehicle. At the same time, Nissan is preparing for a new company to develop, produce and market advanced lithium-ion batteries, a key technological component for all electric powertrains. In addition, it will accelerate development of plug-in hybrid vehicles.


The company has already planned to introduce its first hybrid car–the US market Altima sedan–which utilises a hybrid system developed outside the company in 2007.


‘At Nissan we believe that in order to develop vehicles that are truly environmentally friendly, we need to make significant advances in internal combustion technology while working on electrical power sources in parallel,’ said Mitsuhiko Yamashita, executive vice president of research and development for Nissan.


In terms of plant waste management, the Nissan green programme calls on the company to achieve the best level in the global industry, while it aims to achieve 100 percent recycling of all waste materials in its Japanese plants.



‘Our focus in manufacturing has been on the continual improvement of our environmental performance;’ said Tadao Takahashi, executive vice president of manufacturing for Nissan. ‘Our new environmental plan takes that performance to the ultimate goal of zero waste in our manufacturing processes.’


The car company also plans to reduce volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions in its manufacturing to levels lower than the government regulations in locations around the world. The company has set a target of 15 percent cut on VOC emissions by volume (compared to fiscal year 2005) for its Japanese plants.



Nissan has set another target aimed at increasing the recycle rate for end-of-life vehicles. Globally, Nissan aims to achieve an average 95 per cent recyclable rate by the end of 2010. In Japan, this is five years ahead of the 2015 regulations.



Since 1993, Nissan has deployed regular environmental action plans. Nissan Green Programme 2005, announced in 2002, set challenging targets that included early achievement of 2010 fuel economy standards in Japan, early widespread compliance of Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) standards in Japan and a recycling rate of 95 per cent.