AKRON — Goodyear failed to hit a number of sustainability targets in 2020 due, it said, to complications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
One particular target was a planned increase in the use of soybean oil in place of petroleum-based products, Goodyear noted in its 2020 Corporate Sustainability Report.
In 2020, however, Goodyear fell short of a targeted 100 percent year-on-year increase in the use of soybean oil, reporting an increase of 73 percent, the May 24 report shows. In 2019, the company had increased its use of soybean oil by 90 percent over 2018—far exceeding a 25 percent replacement goal set for that year.
The tire maker linked the shortfall to COVID-19-related production issues and reiterated its long-term goal of full petroleum-oil replacement in its products by 2040.
Another problem area for Goodyear, last year, concerned a planned increase in the use of bio-based replacements—made from residual rice husk ash—for traditional sand-based silica in tire compounds. Here, the tire maker had set itself a goal to double its use of RHA silica by 2021, compared with a 2018 baseline. The company had made significant progress toward that goal in 2019 and increased usage by 74 percent year-on-year.
However, in 2020 use of RHA silica increased only 47% over 2018, due mainly to the effects of COVID on production, Goodyear reported.
On the energy front, meanwhile, Goodyear's manufacturing operations were disrupted by the pandemic, particularly during the second and third quarters of 2020. This resulted in multiple plants operating at reduced production levels, leading to inefficient use of energy, the company reported.
On the other hand, in 2020 Goodyear reduced its greenhouse gas emissions-intensity by 20 percent, its energy-intensity by 19 percent and its water-intensity by 55 percent from the 2010 baseline.