France – French vehicle manufacturer PSA Peugeot Citroën has set an ambitious eco-design target of incorporating at least 20% ‘green materials’ in the polymers used in its cars by the year 2011.
The term ‘green materials’ covers natural fibres such as linen and hemp, non-metallic recycled materials and biomaterials, which are produced using renewable resources rather than petrochemicals.
PSA Peugeot Citroën’s avowed objective is to use fewer fossil fuel plastics and to increase the use of raw materials from renewable sources to make parts lighter, to cut carbon dioxide emissions from plastics production, and to promote plastics recycling.
Under the PSA Peugeot Citroën action plan launched in 2008, the ‘green material’ content of all group vehicles must be increased. This includes existing vehicles, with ‘green materials’ being integrated during their production life, it says. Noting that its engineering teams are working closely with suppliers in the utilisation of these new materials, the company says this approach gives new impetus to the recycled materials industry.
Use of biomaterials is still at the research stage in the automotive industry. To address this issue, scientific partnerships have been set up as part of research groups, bringing together public laboratories, chemical firms and parts suppliers. The aim of these partnerships is to accelerate the application of these materials within the automotive industry, according to PSA Peugeot Citroën.