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GM Partners With Herman Miller and Green Standards to Recycle Office Furniture

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GM, Herman Miller and Green Standards are partnering to refurbish Cody High School in Detroit

General Motors is in the process of redesigning its work environment, and as part of those efforts, recently partnered with environmental firm Green Standards and furniture company Herman Miller to repurpose tens of thousands of old pieces of office furniture and equipment into $1 million of in-kind donations over the next two years. GM anticipates that the program will benefit about 100 community organizations in Michigan, with an emphasis on Detroit.

As managed by Green Standards, the Herman Miller rePurpose Program helps corporations dispose of surplus assets through a combination of resale, recycling, and donation. GM will be using rePurpose to keep nearly all of its existing furniture, equipment, and supplies out of landfills. The assets will result from renovations occurring at the GM Technical Center in Warren, the Proving Ground in Milford, and the headquarters in downtown Detroit.


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“We view waste as just a resource out of place,” said GM Sustainability Director David Tulauskas. “This reuse program enables us to reduce our environmental footprint while making a positive contribution to our community.”

Cody High School in Detroit will be one of the first beneficiaries of the rePurpose program, receiving some of the used furniture and equipment, as well as help from GM, Herman Miller, and Green Standards employee volunteers who will assist in a three-room makeover to enhance the educational learning experience of students and faculty. Volunteers will engage in painting, drywall repair, and floor refinishing, and the rooms are slated to be completed next spring.

The rePurpose program is a result of GM’s $1 billion investment in its Warren Technical Center campus, which was announced in May of last year. The new initiative contributes to GM’s landfill-free and community outreach efforts, and to date, the company has diverted 550 tons of office materials from the landfill through the program.


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