Sustainability Provides Competitive Edge, GM Dealers Say

George Nunnally Chevrolet

by | Jan 26, 2015

George Nunnally ChevroletCertain Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac dealerships across the US are showing their environmental credentials as part of General Motors’ new Green Dealer Recognition program.

Participating dealers have proven track records in areas such as energy reduction, renewable energy use, water conservation efforts, recycling, on-site nature habitats and community outreach, GM says.

The program aligns with GM’s companywide efforts to reduce its environmental footprint and green its supply chain. GM designed the program to encourage dealers to continue these voluntary sustainability efforts and build a network for sharing best practices.

“Within just 24 hours of the program’s launch, 66 dealerships signed up and began evaluating their performance against our criteria,” said Kurt McNeil, GM vice president of US Sales and Service.

To date, 180 dealers have requested access to complete the performance assessment. GM’s green dealer support team then validates and evaluates the submissions against specific criteria. A dealer’s continuous year-over-year improvement will lead to ongoing annual recognition.

Eight dealers have achieved green dealer recognition for superior sustainability performance.

What drives these environmental upgrades? GM dealers cite four main reasons:

  1. Customers: Car buyers want more than fuel-efficient vehicles; they want to buy them from environmentally responsible companies. Sustainability provides a competitive edge.
  2. Operational efficiency: LED lighting slashes energy bills and native plantings reduce water costs.
  3. Employee motivation: Sustainable practices give employees a sense of pride.
  4. Community: The actions align operations with the beliefs and values of their communities.

GM shaped the initiative based on insights from dealers who participated in a pilot program. George Nunnally Chevrolet in Bentonville, Arkansas, encouraged the concept of sharing cost-effective activities that dealers could implement during remodels or new builds, such as installing LED lighting or capturing rainwater from a rooftop.

Late last year, Chevrolet said it is purchasing carbon credits worth up to $5 million to help 11 colleges across the US pay for energy efficiency-based carbon reductions and retiring the carbon credits to benefit the climate instead of using them to offset the emissions of Chevrolet vehicles or operations.


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