The Green Future of Cars:
Electrifying and Sustainable
In our exclusive interview, we catch up with Mr. Tomáš Vitoch, environmentalist at Hyundai Motor
Manufacturing Czech s.r.o., to find out how the automotive giant is committed to protecting
the environment. From environmentally friendly manufacturing processes to innovative green
measures, discover how Hyundai is working towards a more sustainable future for our planet.
How does Hyundai implement
the environmental legislation into its
Hyundai is a large company that has to
comply with both Czech and European
legislation. As far as ecology is concerned,
these requirements are mainly related
to waste management, water and air
protection, all together under the socalled integrated pollution prevention and
control. Biodiversity protection and other
CSR activities with an ecological overlap
are also included.
In addition, we are part of the environmental
management system, EMS for short.
This consists of the ISO 14001 standard,
which companies can comply with on
a voluntary basis, and which sets additional
criteria beyond the law to minimise the
environmental impact of companies'
activities. We are the only automotive
company in the Czech Republic to also
have the EMAS (Eco Management and
Audit Scheme) certification.
As part of our grand overall strategy, one
of our main sustainability visions is to be
completely CO2 neutral by 2040. We
are also, of course, addressing material
consumption, pollutant content and
waste reduction. We are gradually moving
towards circularity principles and want to
be as sustainable as possible.
You mention waste, what specific steps
are you taking to reduce its production
or improve its usability?
It used to be a trend to sort waste, today
we are trying to prevent its production
directly or to recycle as much of it as
possible. We recycle virtually all packaging
materials, those that cannot be recycled
can be used after further processing, for
example as alternative fuel.
From the point of view of sustainability
and circularity, it is not only important for
us to sort waste, but we are also interested
in the way it is further managed. That's why
we also want our suppliers to look for new
ways to dispose of their waste. We also try
to be proactive ourselves and therefore
look for methods or implement projects
to recycle waste back into production or
reduce waste. For many years now, we
have been returning waste solvents from
the paint shop back into production after
they have been processed. We are now
working hard on the possibility of reducing
the amount of sludge from the wastewater
treatment process. If we can bring this
project to a successful conclusion, we will
reduce the amount of waste by several
hundred tonnes per year.
we can bring this project
will reduce the amount of waste
by several hundred tonnes per
How does your strategy address the
shift towards green energy and the
reduction of the use of non-renewable
Across Hyundai, we want to save at least
20% of all energy resources and reduce
water consumption by 30% by 2029.
We purchase electricity only from
renewable sources since 2022. We also
have a project in the preparation phase
for our own photovoltaic power plant.
We want to gradually transform other
non-renewable sources as well, in our
case natural gas, so that we can meet
our carbon neutrality target as soon as
possible. Our upcoming waste heat and
water cycling projects will help us greatly
in the future.
Air protection is also a major issue in
the Moravian-Silesian Region. Does your
strategy also take this into account?
Although air pollution in our region is
mainly caused by particulate matter from
heavy industry or heavy traffic, in our
region we mainly produce so-called volatile
organic substances from the production
process of body painting. However, we
have afterburners in our paint shop, thanks
to which we meet all legislative limits with
ease. The largest of these is the so-called
Regenerative Thermal Oxidation, which
we call RTO for short. This system achieves
an efficiency of 97%.
Do you also encourage your employees
to contribute to environmental
protection, e.g. through awarenessraising events?
We have a number of such activities, we
cooperate with ČSOP Salamandr on the
restoration of Beskydy meadows. We also
support the Ostrava Zoo, for example. We
involve our employees in these projects as
part of volunteer days. We are also involved
in biodiversity protection at Hyundai - we
build bird feeders, insect houses, bat boxes
and much more. Our wooden materials
that would otherwise become waste were
used to make the insect houses, so we are
no strangers to upcycling.
Twice a year we also participate in the World
Clean Up Day Czech Republic event, where
our employees can collect waste around
their hometowns, for example.
As part of our big Hyundai Family
Day event, which we organise for our
employees, we focus on ecology in
cooperation with our suppliers. For the
second year in a row, every June, we
organize an Eco-Week awareness-raising
event for our employees, which this year
focused on municipal waste, not only
on its sorting but also its prevention. We
ourselves try to sort municipal waste into
six categories (mixed, plastic, paper, glass,
metal and bio-waste). We have sorting
bins in all our halls, but we try to motivate
our employees not to generate waste in
the first place, if possible of course.
Mr. Vitoch, thank you for the interview.
Text: Barbora Kubalová,
Věra Mrkosová, redakce
Foto: Kateřina Skupieňová
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