Southeast Green - Speaking of Green

What do tequila, cars and sustainability have in common?

Aug. 16, 2016

Debbie Mielewski Research Scientist and Farm to Car Maven Shaping the Future of Ford with Persistence and a Love of Trash Someone else’s trash is Debbie Mielewski’s treasure. It’s a viewpoint the Ford research scientist has built a career on, helping to meet the company’s aggressive sustainability research goals. In the late 1990s when SUVs ruled the road, Mielewski – then technical leader of plastics research at Ford – predicted a time when oil prices would soar, customers would feel the pinch, and Ford would need a solution. In her lab, Mielewski led the charge to reduce the amount of petroleum the company used to produce plastic parts – a financial move with an eye toward environmental consciousness. She turned to soybean oil, a favorite of company founder Henry Ford, and discovered the answer.

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