Fleet News

Minister uses dated statistics to applaud manufacturers

CLEANER Vehicles Task Force leader, Transport Minister Lord Macdonald, has used 1997 statistics to applaud car makers for adopting cleaner and safer ways of producing and disposing of vehicles. Launching the task force's latest report 'The Environmental Impact of Motor Manufacturing and Disposal of End of Life Vehicles - Moving Towards Sustainability', Lord Macdonald said: 'The report shows the industry is taking the environmental impact of its manufacturing processes on board at every stage of a vehicle's life.'

The DETR and DTI-sponsored document states in 1997 about 1.9 million vehicles were scrapped and the average age was 14 years - the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders says cars' average age has dropped to 12 years since then. No mention is made of later scrappage data, such as that provided by the Automotive Consortium on Recycling and Disposal (ACORD) - of which the DETR and DTI are members along with the SMMT.

ACORD said in its second annual report published in December, 1999, that the recycling industry was in trouble and that the level of recycling and recovery from end-of-life vehicles had deteriorated by 2% in the previous 12 months. The ACORD report also showed that in 1998, 1.8 million vehicles were scrapped, total materials for disposal had dropped from two million tonnes to 1.88 million tonnes, the tonnage of parts re-used had reduced by 14,000 tonnes and that the percentage of materials recycled had fallen from 66% to 64%.

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