The new buzzword across the whole spectrum of daily affairs is going green, which infers to reduce pollution to sustainable levels. Automobile giant Toyota seems to take it a bit more seriously than other peer companies. This is evident by the tie-up it had with NDTV to increase awareness about the growing menace of pollution, road safety and environmental degradation.
In the United States of America, the auto maker is a benefactor of a project called MillionTreesNYC, it is a public-private venture whose aim is to plant about 1 million trees in and around the city of New York by the year 2017. In the home country Japan, Toyota has owned up a forest and is busy reviving it and also using it for research purpose worldwide. Prius, the petro-electric hybrid of Toyota has sold more than a million units in North America and Japan alone last year. At the same time Toyota has launched its latest campaign focusing on the CSR (corporate social responsibility) with emphasis towards the environment, Why not?
Skeptics will brand this as an attempt by Toyota to mend the bad press coverage they got last year. Reminding the readers that Toyota joined hands with Detroit-3 to overturn the new regulation by the state of California to reduce pollution caused by vehicles. By the end of the next decade, the law states, vehicles should be tuned to produce 15km for every liter of petrol. So what’s the big fuss about? Well as per Toyota, they needed 2 years more time to implement the same and the rationale was, that it gives the auto makers a time cushion and still get the benefit of reducing the vehicular pollution by 40 percent.
It was hardly surprising that the environmentalist lobby was up in arms against Toyota. It was criticized by one and all from the reduced mileage to the lawsuits against the company. Well it doesn’t take to be a scientist to know that Toyota has much at stake vis-à-vis other car companies. Especially in the wake of the news that along with fellow Japanese car maker Honda, Toyota motors is actually spending a fortune in resources to develop environment friendly car.
The only news that trickled in to India was the planned launch of new small car and the remarkable success of its hybrid car, the Prius. Except that none of this thunderstorm reached Indian shores.
Month before the last, Toyota Motors managed to hog the limelight for all the right reasons, its partnership with NDTV for India’s first round-the-clock environment telethon. The campaign is named as Open up tomorrow, Today and it will run for an entire year and going by the latest buzz it has probably got some good word-of-mouth publicity.
Chairman of NDTV is of the opinion that India’s natural resources are being degraded at a frantic pace and indiscriminate pollution is threatening the environment in a serious manner. He further opined, the industry, the government, the public and the media should come together to bring about a change, as problems of this sort require collective action. As a leading news media company, he believes that it has the responsibility resting on its shoulders to not just initiate a mass movement for to make sure that is gains favorable momentum across the length and breadth of the country. The initiative will be enhanced greatly from the partnership with Toyota Motors.
On the part of the company, its managing director observed, India has shown a phenomenal growth in the last 2 decades both as a society and nation, which means a lot to Toyota as a company. It reasserted the adage that the company gives highest priority to contribute to achieve a green and sustainable environment for the future generations to come. He expressed his gladness to the overall campaign planned by the support of NDTV in order to improve road safety and protect the environment.
As a part of the entire campaign, in the initial days, programs and documentaries with environmental themes will be shown. Alongside these a reality show, the environmentalist of the year, would be launched. All these going around will culminate into a round-the-clock telethon which will highlight the campaign. All NDTV networks will air the campaign which will be sufficed by day long programs interweaved with the environmental themes-like fashion shows, debates on environment featuring kids, chat shows etc. This is not a stand-alone play restricted to the studios of NDTV, but other mediums namely radio and print will soon be taken on board.
The issue has suddenly come in the front of public discourse due to the visibility of the phenomenon, for instance the devastating rains of Mumbai, Tsunami in the Indian Ocean, melting of the Gangotri glacier, fast melting polar ice, high case of respiratory ailments and to top it all, the unpredictable nature of the climate. A retroactive approach taken by an influential public opinion maker and one the largest companies working towards the concept of Green Cars, the campaign has certainly got what it takes.
Any media campaign alone on its might can never become a mass movement until the people affected by it get involved in droves. In this regard NDTV is programming the campaign in such a manner so as to create awareness among the masses. It will also throw light on the practical ways in which people can implement the ideas for the betterment of their environment.
Toyota has gain incredible credibility with masses and the intellectual class as it is the only company which has five hybrids plying the roads- Lexus RX 400h, Camry Hybrid Lexus GS 450h, Prius, the Highlander Hybrid. Many studies in this regards have shown that Toyota as a manufacturer uses plastic which is recycled and PVC. It also uses bio-based polymers. Another feature in Toyota’s cap is the distinction Prius has in terms of the mileage, which is the highest in its class at 25 kmpl. The company in its day to day functioning itself uses and tries to incorporate green option in almost every department- water harvesting, recycling of plastics and paper instead of electricity using natural light on the shop floor. The company also won the coveted and prestigious Environmental Protection Agency awards (EPA).
Being the socially responsible media that NDTV is, the need to exploit those powers for the betterment of environment and to spread the awareness about global warming seems to be natural. Toyota motors have been known to contribute towards the sustainable growth. It delicately balances the economic factor and the environmental factor through technical innovations.
Another notable figure who has put his weight behind this campaign is Dr. R.K. Pachauri. He is a noted ecologist of our time and has inspired millions world over to commit to sustainable growth.
The campaign has just started to roll and 11 more months are to go. But for ordinary folks it’s never too late to talk about, practice better driving or read up methods about saving fuel. And here comes a little information that most of us are ignorant about.
- Your car’s fuel efficiency is reduced by 2 percent if you add just 45 kg weight to it.
- Careful and good drivers save Rs 10,000 in fuel compared to aggressive drivers.
- Exceeding the prescribed limit on the highways tend to reduce the fuel economy of your car by almost 6 percent, shocking revelation-but true.
- Non-stop use of Air-con in slow-moving traffic has the potential to reduce your fuel economy by a whopping 12 percent.
- Idling of engine should not be preferred over turning off, as idling for longer period of time causes more pollution.
- Inadequate tyre pressure in the United States alone costs almost 6 million liters of fuel each year.
- You may add 9kgs of carbon dioxide to the surrounding by burning a paltry 3 liters of petrol.
- Rapid accelerating or braking reduces the mileage by an astronomical 33 percent on the highways and to acceptable 5 percent in the city parameters.