Botetourt County Automaker Achieves Zero Waste Status

BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) — A Botetourt County automaker is working to reduce its carbon footprint and be more environmentally conscious.

Metalsa is now the second company in the Roanoke Valley to commit to zero waste. Commitment means that all scrap and additional waste is recycled into something else or converted into energy.

The company started recycling and reducing its waste in March. On Monday, Metalsa obtained the status of “Zero Waste” installation. The company’s environmental, health and safety coordinator explained how the manufacturer is going green.

“Our waste oil is used in other facilities as an energy source, it doesn’t go to landfill,” said Sam Sexton. “Our shot is a by-product, we use shot peening on our rails.”

The automaker has partnered with local organizations to plan how waste can avoid going to landfill. The account manager of GFI Environmental, one of Metalsa’s partners, explained the impact that going green can have.

“We all try to do a little to help the environment, don’t we? Recycle at home, we do what we can,” said Chase Lanier. “It really helps when a company you work for, when they’re motivated and want that ability to improve the environment.”

Botetourt County, Metalsa and its community partners see the benefits of a zero waste commitment. The county’s director of communications explained how businesses that reduce their carbon footprint can help the surrounding community.

“They’re working with these other organizations to get all of their waste back and be able to use it in other ways,” Tiffany Bradbury said. “For me, as a citizen, I know you are making this a cleaner, better world for my kids and grandkids down the road.”

Sexton explained how other Metalsa factories around the world will follow in the footsteps of the Botetourt County factory.

“We save about $30,000 a year. It sounds like a small amount, but you put that over five, six years, the math works,” Sexton said. “As a global company, we are setting the benchmark and we will continue to set the benchmarks for our business.”

The company has achieved 95% of its zero waste goal, but the goal is to reach 100% by the end of 2030.

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