While most of his speech focused on the business side of running Toyota, Jim Press highlighted a few of the company's green efforts and goals. Press spoke before the Economic Club of Chicago yesterday during the Chicago Auto Show. Following are selected quotes from Press that will be interest to ABG readers:

"Toyota and the auto industry will play a big role in the effort, announced in President Bush's State of the Union address, to reduce gasoline consumption in the year's ahead. We support the administration's goals on CAFE and efforts to reduce U.S. dependence on fossil fuels.

"Preserving the environment is also a high priority for our corporate giving. For example, Toyota is the sole sponsor of National Public Lands Day. Not only do we contribute to the organization financially but each year thousands of Toyota associates volunteer to help restore and clean public parks.

"There are more than 800 million cars and trucks on the world's roads, and our industry is producing another 170,000 a day. It's easy to see that growing auto production can come into conflict with the environment and raise issues of safety.

"A larger auto population leaves a larger footprint on the environment. This presents an important and urgent mission for the automotive industry worldwide. We must get back in front of the curve, reducing the amount by which each new car enlarges that footprint.

"We're already making steady progress in limiting both fuel consumption and tailpipe emissions, aided by a growing stream of high-efficiency engines and hybrid powertrains into the nation's vehicle population.

"Toyota has supplied nearly 70 percent of the quarter million hybrid vehicles on this nation's roads, and worldwide we're approaching a million hybrids sold.

"It's Toyota's belief that whether partnered with gasoline, diesel, hydrogen or something else; hybrids will remain a core technology."

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