General Motors (GM) has announced it is looking to develop sustainable natural rubber for tyres, in an effort to reduce the environmental impact of automotive manufacturing and reduce deforestation.
The US auto giant says it is working with suppliers including Bridgestone, Continental, Goodyear and Michelin to develop “appropriate transparency into natural rubber and ensure its traceability throughout the supply chain”.
Several benefits have been outlined as the result of sustainable tyre rubber, and are described as follows:
“Preserving and restoring primary forests and high conservation value and high carbon stock areas that are critical to addressing climate change and protecting wildlife”
“Improving yield and quality for natural rubber farmers, further supporting the small businesses that contribute 85 percent of this material”
“Mitigating business risk related to supply chain sourcing and performance and helping assure long-term availability of a key commodity”
GM says this is an industry-first commitment to sourcing sustainable natural rubber in tyres, and hopes to drive the automotive sector toward net-zero deforestation, while upholding human and labour rights.
This latest development comes after British luxury marque Bentley announced it is looking into vegan-friendly interiors including leather made out of mushrooms, while Ford teamed up with Tequila company Jose Cuervo to explore the use of used agave plants (above) to create sustainable bioplastics for its vehicles.