HP partners with car firms for hazardous waste compliance

Hewlett Packard has embarked on a pioneering initiative to help some of the world's largest car manufacturers eliminate harmful substances from their automotive supply chains.

The IT firm is working with 34 companies including BMW, Daimler, Ford, Porsche, Jaguar Land Rover and Volvo to facilitate the sharing of hazardous waste information through a global data repository.

More than 40 million data sheets are hosted on the portal, known as the international material data system (IMDS), detailing every substance involved in the manufacture of all vehicle components.

This information will help ensure manufacturers and their supply chains meet regulations related to hazardous substances, by preventing the use of heavy metals such as cadmium, lead, mercury and hexavalent chromium, and ensuring that reportable substances are declared for recycling.

HP is hosting the IMDS for the next five years and says it will help signatories meet their commitments to recycle 95% of the mass of each vehicle sold by 2015.

“Previously, original equipment manufacturers all had their own lists of prohibited and reportable substances, which made it difficult to identify them in the supply chain,” explained Matthew Griffin, a representative from Jaguar Land Rover who sites on the IMDS steering committee.

“The IMDS provides a standardised format for exchanging material information throughout the manufacturing process, making it easier for the automotive industry to comply with legal requirements in a cost-efficient manner.”

Maxine Perella

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