The research was commissioned by Viridis, with contributions from the FIA Foundation and a grant from Biffaward, a multi-million pound environment fund which utilises landfill tax credits donated by Biffa Waste Services.
For the first time a comprehensive study of the material resource flows in the motor industry has been carried out from manufacture through vehicle use, to the final disposal of end of life vehicles. The study identified and quantified the natural resources used and the wastes and emissions produced by the motor industry in the UK during the year 2000.
The main findings were:
The study also carried out an analysis of future trends and influences on the motor industry.
Various scenarios were modelled including the effect of implementing low carbon vehicles, which found that low carbon vehicles alone will not bring transport emissions down to the levels expected under the Kyoto Protocol.
Currently a number of legislative requirements facing the industry driven by the concept of "producer responsibility" will require an industry level approach and a greater degree of collaborative activity than has been the case to date.
This project forms part of the Biffaward Mass Balance Programme. The aim of the programme is to provide accessible, well-researched information about the flows of different resources through the UK economy based either singly, or on a combination of regions, material streams or industry sectors.