Green Dealership: How to Make Your Car Dealer Environmentally Friendly

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By 2030, the US’s greenhouse gas emissions may be cut in half. But that doesn’t mean we can’t make our dealerships green now. Below are some tips on how to transition to green dealership.

Whether you believe in climate change or not, it still is necessary to keep our natural environment green and healthy. This is an essential thing to do as nature provides us the things we need to survive. But this gets harder to do each day as we always look forward to progress. With that said, there are some actions that we can do to help in our own little ways. Read further to learn more about how to make your own green dealership (or transform your current one).

The Green Plan

Before we proceed with turning your dealership into a green and clean business, here’s what the government is up to.

US President Joe Biden announced weeks ago that, through his leadership, the US aims to slash greenhouse gas emissions by half in less than a decade from now. This is one part of his pledges as the US rejoined the Paris Climate agreement during a virtual climate summit last Tuesday. The said summit was attended by a significant number of world leaders, which lasted for two days.

These steps, according to Biden, will “set America on a path of net-zero emissions economy by no later than 2050”. He also added that this decade will be a make-or-break time for scientists to develop some solution to the “climate crisis”.

Many considered this pledge as one of the most ambitious environmental goals for the US, with the infamous Green Deal coming in first. One way to cut gas emissions by half is to make sure most cars are running on electricity, if not all vehicles. In short, dealerships should go green by selling more electric cars. This alone is a very tall order. The Biden administration has been pressured by environmental groups to commit to battling climate change.

Although the current admin has already set some plans and goals to battle the environmental crisis, this may still likely get some environmental groups’ criticisms. This may come from the fact that, although 50% is a high number for a goal, it still falls short compared to other countries. In fact, the United Kingdom pledged to cut emissions to 68% by 2030 and a staggering 78% by 2035.

If this pushes through, most car dealerships may need to adjust their logistics, finances, and marketing strategies to make way for the emission cutting.

Why This is a Good Thing

Not only will this be a good thing for the environment, but this will also create a substantial positive impact on consumers and the economy.

According to a study published in World Research Institute, greenhouse gas emission reductions can take advantage of plenty of factors. The factors examined by the analysis are the following; natural gas, hydrofluorocarbons, electric consumption, electric generation, and passenger vehicles. Hydrofluorocarbon alone already makes up 55% of today’s emissions. When these emissions are cut in half, there could be a significant change to the US economy.

An EV-Friendly America

The plan to make all cars in the US electric is part of Biden’s American Jobs Plan. This $2.25 trillion plan, which was revealed weeks ago, aims to create more jobs for the American people and provide better infrastructure across the states. If it goes according to plan, this will shed the country’s EV industry, which has been slowly increasing its popularity as years go by. If Congress passes this plan, electric vehicle sales will shoot up exponentially.

As of writing, America’s AV market share is only one-third of that of China’s. This is one thing that the current admin is trying to change. The proposal aims to propel American carmakers to source domestic raw materials and parts supplies and renovate factories to prepare for global market competition. For this part of the plan, the administration allotted $174 million of the budget. The budget also includes provisions for American workers to create local batteries. This way, the country would be self-reliant when it comes to EV production and raw materials.

Benefits from the American Jobs Plan

Rebates and Incentives: This is already standard practice in the country, but it would be amplified more if this plan comes to fruition. Consumers can get to enjoy sales rebates as well as tax incentives when they purchase American EVs. Mass production would make EVs more affordable, so a significant percentage of the population won’t have a hard time getting one.

The plan doesn’t only cover private vehicles, but this will take effect on transit vehicles. The goal is to replace diesel-powered transit vehicles – at least 50,000 of them – to become electricity-powered. In addition, 20% of yellow school buses across the country will also run using electric engines.

Going Green May Not Be Good for Dealerships

Although it may seem that the plan is well thought out and well put, this may not sit well with many car dealerships. The struggle to keep up inventory during the pandemic is already a problem in itself, and yet here’s another thing to plan for. Simply put, many dealerships are not yet ready to go green, at least for now. Here are some concerns raised by dealership owners regarding the plan.

For one, turning all the inventory into EV – whether slowly or at one time – is a logistical nightmare. Dealerships fear that the change may take some time, a lot of money, and many years for them to have income returns.

Another concern car dealership owners fear if everything goes green is the level of difficulty in taking EVs off their dealerships. Although the electric vehicle concept is nothing new, this is yet to be fully embraced by most consumers. It may take a long while for a considerable number of car buyers to get used to the idea and eventually buy their own EVs. But until then, the dealership’s waiting game may impact their finances with detrimental proportions.

How to Make Your Dealership Go Green

Now you don’t have to get rid of your fuel-powered vehicles from your current inventory. The government’s plan may not take off anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean dealerships can’t be nature-friendly. If you’re all about helping our environment, here are some tips on how to “green” up your dealership.

Use as Much Natural Light as Possible

Owning and managing a showroom means you need to have light in all the right places. But you may need to reconsider your business if you have to use a lot of artificial light all day. And when you do, having an electric bill as high as a rocket can reach may just be a normal thing to you. Although this may be a thing you can handle every month, that doesn’t really help the environment.

So, instead of turning and leaving the lights on even in the daytime, find a way that you can maximize the available daylight to lighten up your dealership. According to the Federal Energy Management Program of the Department of Energy, using up sunlight for lighting up your house or business can minimize energy consumption by 80%. If you have an indoor showroom, open up all your windows to let the sunshine in. If you don’t have many glass walls, you can use solar light tubes instead. For more info on light tubes, click here.

The Roof is NOT on Fire

One of the disadvantages of using sunlight to illuminate your space is that it tends to get too warm or too hot. So, what to do to solve this? By keeping your roof cool. Cool roofs are a quick and cost-effective solution to reduce carbon emissions. Thus, it doesn’t only make your dealership comfortably cool, but it also makes your business green.

So how does a cool roof work? Cool roofs are developed in such a way that it reflects the visible, ultraviolet, and infrared waves back to the atmosphere. As a result, these roofs reduce the heat that enters the building by up to 60%. Through this, the roofs can help your dealership reduce the use of AC as it’s not as needed. There are different types of cool roofs, there are also cooling roof paint products available in the market today.

Recycling Never Fails

Last in this list is perhaps the most common and most accessible that everyone can do. Most businesses – including car dealerships – can go green by implementing recycling initiatives.

Let’s start with the paper. Many businesses worldwide are implementing no paper policy, which means virtually all documents must be passed and submitted through email or other document-sending platforms. If this is something your dealership can’t do just yet, you can save paper usage using used but clean scratch paper. Another initiative is to place a recycle bin in different areas of your business. This will make trash collectors’ jobs more manageable as they can sort recyclables easily.

There are so many ways to start recycling within your business, but it will take us another post.

Is Your Dealership Ready to Go Green?

You don’t need to wait for the government’s Jobs Plan or even the Green New Deal to make your dealership friendly to the environment. There are plenty of ways to help nature, and you can start today. One way for your dealership to reduce carbon emissions is to sell cars online. This way, your clients will be able to shop and check your inventory without physically going to your dealership, reducing fuel use. To make your vehicles for sale more enticing online, add a vehicle condition report in the mix. Vehicle condition reports help provide more detailed information on the cars you sell online to give more confidence in each online car purchase.

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See how Carketa’s solutions can help you optimize your average days on lot and positively impact your dealership.