TRAVERSE CITY, Mich., Aug. 6, 2009 – Ford Motor Company’s top environmental officer today pointed to the need for continued cooperation with the federal government as a significant factor to advance the company and the country’s vision for greener transportation.
“The foundation of Ford’s sustainability strategy is based on delivering affordable fuel economy for millions,” said Sue Cischke, group vice president, Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering. “Government policy such as fuel standards and greenhouse gas emission regulations, as well as support for the development of advanced technologies, plays a key role in supporting Ford’s product and technology pathway for a more fuel-efficient future.”
Cischke cited the recent agreement on one national standard for fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions regulations as an example of how the government, the auto industry and the environmental community can work together toward common goals.
The agreement provides a framework to reach an average fuel economy standard of 35.5 mpg in 2016. Creating one national standard gives Ford and other automakers greater clarity, certainty and flexibility to achieve the nation’s goals for energy independence and climate change mitigation. Ford is committed to continuing to work with the federal agencies to finalize these standards.
To meet the demand for higher fuel efficiency, Ford will leverage and expand EcoBoost engine technology that will be available on 90 percent of the company’s nameplates by 2013. Other technologies such as six-speed transmissions and electric power assist steering, which yield additional fuel efficiencies, will also be widely applied across Ford’s vehicle lineup over the next several years.
Ford has doubled the number and production of its hybrid vehicles and announced an aggressive strategy to bring four new electrified vehicles to market over the next three years. They include a battery-electric Transit Connect commercial van in 2010, a battery-electric Ford Focus passenger car in 201l, and the next-generation hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicle in 2012.
Overall, Ford has committed to $14 billion of investment in the development and deployment of new technologies over the next seven years.
“Ford is pleased that the Obama administration has recognized the substantial investment required to develop the technologies that will increase fuel efficiency and decrease greenhouse gas emissions,” said Cischke. “We appreciate the administration’s partnership in retooling plants, developing advanced technologies and supporting the domestic production of key components and batteries.”
Yesterday, the Department of Energy announced a grant to Ford to support internal production of a key electric vehicle component, an electric-drive transaxle. This is just one example of how the administration is supporting domestic production of future technology, which will help make it more affordable for consumers.
Cischke also noted the critical link between energy prices and purchase decisions as a driving force in the need to implement a comprehensive national energy policy.
“Price signals matter. That is why we support a comprehensive, economy-wide, upstream national carbon cap and trade program that can slow, stop and reverse the growth of U.S. emissions while expanding the U.S. economy,” Cischke said. “Ford remains committed to delivering the fuel-efficient vehicles that will help achieve our nation’s goals, but it is imperative that government also address the need for lower carbon fuels, consumer incentives and price signals to adopt the technologies that will deliver a more fuel-efficient, greener future.”
Ford recognizes the need for a comprehensive approach to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to address climate change concerns. While cap and trade for carbon emissions remains a complex challenge, Cischke noted the need to employ an integrated approach that would include contributions from all of the key stakeholders.
Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 205,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company’s wholly owned brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.ford.com.