General Motors plans to make half of its major global manufacturing operations landfill-free by the end of 2010 — meaning that all production waste or garbage will be recycled or reused at more than 80 of its manufacturing operations over the next 28 months.

As part of the initiative, the company announced 33 global operations have recently reached landfill-free status, bringing the company's current total number of landfill-free manufacturing operations to 43, said Gary Cowger, GM's group vp-global manufacturing and labor.

Cowager said that at GM's landfill-free plants, over 96% of waste materials are recycled or reused, and more than 3% is converted to energy at waste-to-energy facilities — not only helping the environment but GM's bottom line, too, he stressed.

As a result of these global recycling efforts, recycled metal scrap sales are approaching $1 billion in annual revenue, said Cowager. Additionally, in North America alone, GM will generate about $16 million in revenue from the sale of recycled cardboard, wood, oil, plastic and other recycled materials.