The United States uses 2 million plastic beverage bottles every five minutes. Many of these end up polluting our lakes and oceans, and some are recycled. In an attempt to reduce the number of non-biodegradable plastic bottles contaminating the environment, Coca-Cola developed a recyclable, lightweight, durable plastic made with 30 percent plant material and PET (polyethylene terephtalate). Coca-Cola first began using PET in 2009, and since doing so, has used the plastic in more than 18 billion PlantBottle packages worldwide. As a result, an estimated 400,000 barrels of oil have been conserved, and environmental organizations such as the World Wildlife Fund have already endorsed the use of PlantBottle Technology.
Now, Ford Motor Company has teamed up with Coca-Cola to produce the first-ever interior fabric made from PlantBottle technology. The fabric has been used to cover the seat cushions, seat backs, head restraints, door panel inserts, and headliners of a Ford Fusion-Energi research vehicle, which will make its world debut later this month at the L.A. Auto Show, alongside the concept vehicle for the 2015 Edge.
If the same technology were used in all Ford Motor Company vehicles, “it would displace nearly 4 million pounds of petroleum-derived materials, as well as save the equivalent of 295,000 gallons of gasoline and 6,000 barrels of oil”, according to a Ford news release. Incorporating PlantBottle technology into the Ford Fusion-Energi would add to a growing list of technological innovations meant to not only reduce our dependence on oil, but also to save customers money in the long run while making cars more environmentally-friendly for their end-of-life process.
To note, the Ford Fusion Energi is The Blue Oval’s most fuel-efficient sedan on account of its ability to be driven in electric-only mode for approximately 30 percent of the time, thereby reducing fuel costs and saving customers an estimated $7,000 within the first five years of ownership. The foam used in the seat cushions of the Fusion Energi incorporates soybeans in its production, demonstrating yet another environmentally-friendly innovation that “has reduced petroleum production by more than 5 million pounds and carbon dioxide emissions by 20 million pounds annually” since 2007. In that regard, the integration of PlantBottle Technology is just the latest example of Ford Motor Company’s drive to provide the most eco-friendly and environmentally-sustainable vehicles on the market.
The Motrolix Take
Something tells us that Ford has many more eco-friendly innovations on the way.