The 2018 World Water Day, with its theme “Nature for Water,” seeks its inspiration from Nature and explores what we can learn from it. This global observance day, established by the United Nations in 1993, invites us to learn from the solutions that exist in nature to help preserve this precious natural resource, to consume it responsibly, and to minimize the environmental risks associated with the biodiversity of aquatic ecosystems.
FCA has worked to conserve this natural resource for many years, progressively reducing the water footprint of our plants, supporting projects for the recovery and protection of biodiversity, and involving our employees so that this commitment also translates into individual, concrete and daily actions.
Our FCA Environmental Guidelines explicitly state that responsibility for protecting the environment rests with everyone in our Group.
As part of our commitment to reduce water consumption, FCA has reduced by 37% water consumption per vehicle produced at our plants worldwide compared to 2010 levels.
While FCA continuously works to reduce water use in our operations, the following stories illustrate some of the more unique demonstrations of our commitment to water conservation.
The wonder of nature around us is made even more accessible thanks to the capabilities of Jeep® brand vehicles. The TAMAR project in Brazil, an initiative to protect endangered sea turtles, began its mission in 1982 aboard three Jeep SUVs.
Sea turtles play a key role in marine ecosystems: for example, they contribute to the health of Posidonia meadows and coral reefs. The goal of the Jeep®/TAMAR partnership is to provide secure access to difficult-to-reach areas when monitoring egg laying and the birth of turtle pups on more than 1,100 km of Brazilian coast.
More than 35 million turtles have been protected through the TAMAR project. Today, Jeep® continues to support the TAMAR project team by supplying Wrangler, Renegade and Compass vehicles, all with four-wheel drive.
Jeep® is a global icon with unmatched off-road capability: the brand offers a full line of SUVs that helps us engage responsibly with nature during life’s extraordinary journeys.
What does an aquarium have to do with an automotive stamping plant? Not much, on the surface. But FCA is always looking for ways to communicate to employees the importance of our water stewardship initiatives. The FCA stamping plant in Warren (U.S.), where millions of parts are stamped each year, has progressively reduced the environmental impact of its processes and the use of chemicals used to treat cooling water. The result is a lower environmental impact as well as an increase in the water recirculation index.
To demonstrate how effective their efforts have been, a 375-liter aquarium forms the centerpiece of an environmental communication area to welcome employees and visitors. The aquarium is continuously fed with water from the plant’s industrial processes, a living demonstration that it is clean enough to support a variety of fish.
The Warren plant and many other FCA facilities in the surrounding area are located near the shores of the Great Lakes, which serve as a constant reminder of the importance of living and working in harmony with the environment that surrounds us, and in particular of the need to conserve our water resources.
In Verrone (Italy), FCA has plant that builds transmissions for a wide range of vehicles, including the Jeep Renegade and Cherokee, the Fiat 500X, Tipo and 500L, and the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, MiTo and 4C. This plant is a showcase for environmental sustainability, and for the protection of biodiversity in particular.
FCA created the plant’s Biodiversity Action Plan in 2012 to align the plant’s commitments with the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity (2011-2020). The plan covers a variety of initiatives and activities aimed at safeguarding biodiversity in protected areas around the plant, as well as helping create greater awareness of related issues among residents and students from the local community.
The plan’s achievements include the recovery of wetlands (with a related improvement in biodiversity), the creation of an educational apiary, the installation of nests for birds, the creation of a wetlands area with a phytodepuration plant, and the promotion of organic farming techniques to reduce the agricultural impact on biodiversity. These activities have created and help strengthen strong ties among the many stakeholders in the area, including employees, families, neighboring towns, local institutions, schools and universities.
In 2017, the Verrone plant received the "Lean & Green Management Award" from the consulting companies Growtth© Consulting Europe GmbH and Quadriga Consult, which recognizes lean production resulting from efficient management of plants, logistics, energy and environmental resources, including water and biodiversity.
Water is essential to sustain life, even though access to adequate supply is not universally guaranteed in equal measure.
In India, FCA is actively engaged in a program to improve hygiene conditions at schools located in Shirur (Pune), not far from the Ranjangaon area where is located the Fiat India Automobiles Private Limited (FIAPL) plant that produces several vehicles including the Jeep Compass, Fiat Urban Cross, Fiat Punto and the Fiat Linea.
This initiative, from 2014 to date, has assisted 144 schools and more than 18,700 students through the provision of adequate sanitation facilities and the delivery of health and hygiene awareness programs. FIAPL employees are engaged in site identification, evaluation of needs, feasibility studies, execution and final handover of the facility to schools.
There are many actions that we can all take to help create a more secure future for water: this responsibility affects us both at the workplace and in our private lives. Our corporate culture of integrity and responsibility affects everything we do.