Questions to Jean-Christophe Guérin, Vice President, Manufacturing and Executive Committee Member

Portrait de Jean-Christophe Guerin

You have just received the Grand Jury Prize at the Sustainable Industry awards. What does this award represent?

First and foremost, it rewards the hard work and resourcefulness of the Les Gravanches site which was able to harness existing technology to reach its goal of zero CO emissions. This achievement was made possible by technological innovations driven by our engineering and process development teams. The Les Gravanches site is the perfect embodiment of the Group’s “Everything will be sustainable” vision, in particular, our goal of achieving carbon-neutral plants in 2050. We are true to our culture of saying what we will do and doing what we say.

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Sophie Lesage, Environmental and Prevention Guarantee Manager of the Gravanches site

Etienne de Roffignac , Director of the Gravanches site

How would you define a sustainable industry?

A sustainable industry needs to be capable of finding the right balance so that its performance meets the expectations of all stakeholders in society. This means being Profitable & Ecological & Social. Being profitable means guaranteeing the viability of the company and giving it the resources to grow while being both ecological and social. Being ecological, in particular for the plants, means mitigating or eliminating the environmental impacts of its activities such as CO emissions, VOC* emissions, waste production, water and energy consumption, air and water quality. Being social means communicating all the time, ensuring the wellbeing and development of employees and caring about the communities where the company operates.

 

*VOC : Volatile Organic Compounds

How is the Group responding to these challenges?

We have set ourselves an ambitious goal: we would like all our plants to be carbon neutral in 2050. This does not just concern CO, we have a technology development plan to work on all the components of our environmental footprint (air and water quality, energy consumption etc.).
In addition to the environmental footprint of its plants, the Group is also working to reduce the impact of its products and services; I am referring to our 4R strategy.

 

Reduce: cut the consumption of raw materials while making gains in performance.

Reuse: identify those technologies which give products a second life like retreading.

Recycle: use end-of-life tires to make other new tires or products.

Renew: make use of renewable raw materials.

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Learn more:

  • May 25 2020

Fighting global warming: Michelin’s targets approved

How did the Les Gravanches site succeed in reaching zero CO₂ emissions?

It can be explained by two key developments. The first was the use of manufacturing process technology which is totally powered by green electricity. The second was phasing out fossil fuel to heat buildings; the heat generated during manufacturing is now recovered by a heat pump and used for heating and cooling.

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  • Les Gravanches facts and figures

    This plant uses an automatic process to manufacture Ultra High-Performance tires for OEMs and markets across the globe. It also produces motorsports tires for car and motorcycle racing (Porsche Cup and MotoGP).

    • 2001: the year the building was completed and the first tires rolled off the production line
    • 750: headcount
    • 5,500: number of tires produced a day
    • 1,800,000: tire production target for 2020

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