GM Releases First Sustainability Report as New Company

Automaker integrates sustainability into business model
Jan 13, 2012 11:15 AM ET

(3BL Media / theCSRfeed) Detroit, MI – January 13, 2012 – General Motors has released its first global sustainability report as a new company, reinforcing its belief that sustainability goals are best achieved when integrated into its business model.

“Sustainability feeds our bottom line and sustaining a profitable business is our ultimate responsibility,” said GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson. “Profits enable reinvestment – in R&D to reimagine a car’s DNA; in cleaner, more fuel-efficient technologies; in plants that better conserve resources; in improved vehicle safety; in job creation and stability; and in the communities in which we live and work.”

The report details sustainability progress in four sections:

  • Design: Leading in the research and development of advanced technologies to help reduce petroleum dependency, improve fuel economy and reduce emissions.

  • Build: Maximizing the benefits of operating our facilities in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.

  • Sell: Offering sustainable vehicle choices for consumers around the world.

  • Reinvest: Ensuring the company’s economic viability, being an employer of choice, and enhancing quality of life in its communities.

According to the report, what GM needs to grow its business is aligned with the needs of society – namely energy alternatives and advanced technologies that help reduce dependency on petroleum, improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions, and bold thinking about personal mobility in the 21st century.

“GM’s success depends in part on offering vehicles and services to solve these challenges while meeting customer needs,” said Akerson.  “The Chevrolet Volt is a great example. During a time when we were fighting for our life as a company and managing through a global economic downturn, we still managed to launch one of the most environmentally sound and transformational vehicles in history.”

The report reinforces GM’s commitment to an open and collaborative culture. It is committed to working with all stakeholders, from policymakers, like those in the United States with whom it achieved new fuel economy standards, to business partners, such as LG in South Korea, with whom it is pushing the envelope in electric vehicle development.

Sustainability highlights from around the world in 2010 and 2011 include:

“This company has come a long way in a short time, but we know it’s just the beginning,” said Akerson. “We need to, and will, do even better. This is the crux of the new GM: generating profitable growth that will allow us to improve what we make, how we make it and the communities where we make it.”

The report also includes a conversation with GM Vice President of Sustainability and Global Regulatory Affairs Mike Robinson on automotive industry challenges, climate change, affordability of advanced technologies and the regulatory environment.

For more information on GM’s environmental commitment, visit and its environmental blog.

General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM, TSX: GMM) and its partners produce vehicles in 30 countries, and the company has leadership positions in the world's largest and fastest-growing automotive markets.  GM’s brands include Chevrolet and Cadillac, as well as Baojun, Buick, GMC, Holden, Isuzu, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety, security and information services, can be found at