Corning Incorporated and Earth Day will be forever linked.
Earth Day was established on April 22, 1970, when U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson attempted to channel the energy of the anti-war movement into a single day focused on the environment. The idea worked – more than 20 million people demonstrated across the country, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was founded just months later.
That year also saw amendments to the federal Clean Air Act, which regulated emissions for mobile pollution sources such as cars, planes, and trains as well as stationary ones like factories and power plants.
For the next two years, Corning worked to develop a solution so automakers could meet these new standards. The pressure was on, but Corning answered the call in 1973 with the production of the first cellular ceramic substrate, launching a global clean-air movement.
In 1978, Corning developed the ceramic particulate filter, together with the cellular ceramic substrates to form the core of world-class emissions control systems and clean-air technologies. From light-duty passenger cars to heavy-duty trucks and construction equipment, these systems deliver consistent, reliable, and durable performance under demanding conditions.
Today, Corning Environmental Technologies is still innovating these and other technologies. “Nearly 50 years later, the need is still very significant, but we have become much broader and continue to introduce innovative products,” said Eric Musser, executive vice president, Corning Technologies & International.
Now, Corning is working with automakers in Europe and China to meet new clean-air standards and create even more effective and durable substrates and filters. These emission control products have prevented more than 4 billion tons of both hydrogen and nitrogen oxide, and over 40 billion tons of carbon monoxide from entering the air. This is equivalent to the emissions produced by nearly 230 billion passenger cars driven for a year, or more than 14 billion tanker trucks’ worth of gasoline.