Volume 10, Issue 1 - January/February 2008
Is the National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA) jumping on the green-movement bandwagon by launching a campaign designed to tout the environmental benefits of repair? Is the repair community full of a bunch of long-haired tree-hugging hippies who sip lattés and donate to Green Peace? How can an industry that surrounds a product that uses petroleum have the nerve to claim to be environmentally friendly?
Simple. The repair of laminated glass, especially automotive glass, is by its very nature an environmentally friendly action. It is a fact. We are just merely saying so.
Our mission is to promote repair as the first option. In a world where cities are banning plastic bags and bottled water, most people do not know that laminated glass cannot be recycled.
The repair industry has been doing its part to preserve our planet for decades by repairing damaged windshields instead of sending them to landfills. More than a few companies within the repair community have been promoting the environmental strengths of repair for years.
With growing concerns over the use of our natural resources and the current and future condition of our environment it makes good sense for NWRA to formulate a plan to increase the public’s knowledge of the environmental impact of replacing automotive glass that can be repaired. Therefore the NWRA has developed and released its Green Initiative, Global Repair, earlier this month at the Annual Fall Conference. The goal of the initiative is to provide members of the association with the tools they need to educate their current, future and prospective customers that by repairing a non-recyclable windshield instead of replacing it they are not only saving themselves time and money, but they are contributing to the well-being of their environment.
The future national campaign will be an ongoing three-year effort by the members of the NWRA. The program will target the glass and auto insurance industries as well as consumers. The association also will hold several national and international forums designed to bring these three groups together in an educational setting designed to promote repair.
The association has produced the literature and marketing tools necessary to inform the current automobile owning public of the environmental impact of replacing repairable non-recyclable automotive glass. Among these tools are consumer brochures, radio and print ads and a teacher kit that can be incorporated into any public/private school environmental education program.
Our objective is not only public education about repair benefits but to increase the number of repairs done nationally. We will do this by equating repair with a healthy environment.
Paul Syfko is president of Glass Medic America in Westergate, Ohio, and serves as president of the National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA). Mr. Syfko’s opinions are solely his own and not necessarily those of this magazine.