TAVCOR Motor Group is 100% invested in bringing about incremental change by reducing their carbon footprint year-on-year in Nelson Mandela Bay.
With sustainability and environmental best practice reflected in the company values and philosophy, the 70-year old business is an award-winning trend-setter of responsible business in the region.
Tavcor Motor Group Human Resources Director Megan Stow said led by the Environmental, Health and Safety Team, four major elements form part of the group’s sustainability practices.
Solar Projects: With three solar plants at Audi Centre Port Elizabeth, Tavcor Volkswagen William Moffett and Tavcor Technical Centre generating a combined 483.5 kWp from the sun, the Tavcor Motor Group is able to significantly reduce their reliance on the country’s constrained electricity supply. In addition, all excess power is fed back into the national grid as per a wheeling agreement with the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality. The group’s capital investment into the solar project to date has been R5.6-million with an additional R2-million planned to be invested in a second solar project for the remaining dealerships in Port Elizabeth. It is envisioned that the third leg of the solar project would include a solar plant at the George dealerships.
Recycling: “We recycle everything we possibly can – old metal, batteries, catalytic converters, cardboard and paper. Recycling is very important to us because not only do we recycle our used oil, but the money that we generate from the recycling funds all our CSI projects,” said Stow. Revenue from old oil amount to on average R130 000 per year. The CSI projects supported by the group also fit in with sustainability practices and greening principles e.g. where recycled materials are used to build schools (New Holy Savior in Walmer Township and Silindokuhle in Joe Slovo) and a community garden that helps unemployed youth grow vegetables (Lim’uphile in Walmer township). The school buildings, which were built from recycled materials like tyres and pallets by CSI partner Saga Collectif, have won several architectural awards.
Rainwater harvesting: All the Tavcor dealerships’ wash bays use rain-harvested water. To date over 10-million litres of harvested rainwater has been used by Enterprise Development entity, Siyoyisa, the company that manages the wash bays. In addition, only environmentally friendly chemicals are used, making these wash bays “the cleanest, greenest carwash in town”, said Siyoyisa General Manager Carmen Jordan. “We pride ourselves in looking after the environment and what better way to use harvested rainwater to run our dealerships wash bays. I feel delighted to be part of water saving in the Bay – especially in these tough times when we are faced with huge water shortages,” said Jordan.
Employee education: The Tavcor Motor Group’s health and safety committee, who run all of the sustainability programmes, are responsible for awareness and educational campaigns among staff members and internal stakeholders to encourage recycling, saving resources and looking after the environment. The group has adopted an inherent environmentally conscious mindset – which is lived by the staff members. This team effort has resulted in the Tavcor Motor Group being honoured as the two-times winner of the Exporters Eastern Cape’s SJM Flex Environmental Practice Award in 2018 and again in 2020.