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Jerry York and Gm

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The Sustainability Business Case for General Motors
April 22, 2014
Master’s Project for the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment Team Rose Buss Heather Croteau Steven Davidson Carole Kerrey Janet Van De Winkle Faculty Advisor Professor Thomas Gladwin

The purpose of this report is to evaluate and articulate the business case for sustainability for General Motors Company (GM). After assessing the company’s exposure to risk and opportunities, the team recommends that GM should implement an internal price on carbon and a sustainable supply chain strategy. These recommendations will provide GM with tangible and substantial financial benefit in addition to improved risk mitigation and brand value. Additionally, the team found that these recommendations are viable within GM’s corporate structure and can generate systemic benefits throughout the company.

Thank you to our client, David Tulauskas, and our advisor, Professor Thomas Gladwin.

Executive Summary 4 Introduction 6 Client GM Corporate Overview 7 Sustainability & General Motors Sustinability & the Auto Industry Green Ranking Systems 14 Competitor Trends 17 About the Project Proposal & Opportunities Scoping 26 22


Research GM Interviews 28 Conferences 31 Corporate Trends & Innovations Regulations & Legislative Activity Recommendations Recommendation Development Carbon Monetization 39 Sustainable Supply Chain Strategy

32 35 36 42

Supporting Statements Support for Recommendations 45 Supporting Statements and Analysis Framework 48 #1: Reduce GM’s exposure to the financial risks associated with carbon regulations 49 #2: Mitigate operational risk in resource-constrained and/or highly polluted geographies such as China #3: Reduce exposure to electricity cost increases and generate revenue from renewable energy credits #4: Mitigate financial risk

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