Polestar and Rivian Report: In response to the climate crisis, electric vehicle pioneers Polestar and Rivian have released a groundbreaking report, initiated in collaboration with global management consulting firm Kearney, that highlights the looming threat of the car industry overshooting the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) 1.5-degree pathway target by at least 75% by 2050.

2023 Polestar and Rivian Report: Urgent Action Required to Meet Climate TargetsThe report shows that without immediate action, the automotive industry will have spent its full carbon budget by 2035, a decade ahead of the IPCC’s 1.5-degree target.

The report, titled “Pathway Report,” presents a clear pathway for the industry to follow to stay on track, requiring a three-lever approach that goes beyond simply increasing electrification.

The report outlines immediate actions that car manufacturers can take between now and 2030 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in supply chains, increase renewable energy in power grids, and accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.

The Need for Urgent Action

Passenger vehicles contribute 15% of all greenhouse gas emissions globally, and the IPCC has called for a 43% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The report’s findings suggest that the automotive industry is far off track, and urgent action is required to prevent catastrophic environmental impacts.

Fredrika Klarén, Polestar Head of Sustainability, said: “Car companies may be on different paths when it comes to brand, design, and business strategies, and some won’t even admit that the road to the future is electric. I believe it is, and that the climate crisis is a shared responsibility, and we must look beyond tailpipe emissions. This report makes clear the importance of acting now and together. There’s a clear cost to inaction, but there’s also a financial opportunity for innovators who find new answers to the challenges we face.”

The Three-Lever Approach

The Pathway Report identifies three key levers that the automotive industry needs to pull in parallel to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stay on track with the Paris Agreement:

  1. Replace fossil fuel-powered cars with electric vehicles as quickly as possible. However, this alone will not be enough to meet the targets.
  2. Increase the amount of renewable energy in power grids to enable EVs to reach their full potential through green charging.
  3. Reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the manufacturing supply chain by switching to low-carbon materials and investing in renewable energy solutions.

The report highlights that automakers must take action on all three levers to make a significant impact and limit greenhouse gas emissions to stay within the IPCC’s target.

Anisa Costa, Rivian’s Chief Sustainability Officer, adds: “The report’s findings are sobering. Our hope is that this report lays the groundwork for the automotive industry to collaborate in driving progress at the pace and scale we need – and ideally inspiring other industries to do the same. Together, I’m confident we can win the race against time.”

Collaboration and Collective Action

Polestar 3: the exciting Polestar SUV offers 910 Nm and 380-mile EV rangeThe report stresses the need for collaboration and collective action among automakers to drive rapid momentum toward a sustainable future. The industry must invest in manufacturing capabilities to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles, implement a firm end date for fossil fuel car sales globally, and build out renewable energy supply to global grids to support green charging.

Additionally, the industry must decarbonize its manufacturing supply chains through low-carbon materials and renewable energy solutions.

The report has been shared with leading car makers worldwide, along with an invitation to a roundtable to discuss collective action. The goal is to find a path toward unprecedented, relevant, and collective climate action for the car industry.

Angela Hultberg, global sustainability director at Kearney, sad: “We looked at different scenarios, different data points, and the conclusion is that no matter how you model it, we are far too close for comfort. We sincerely hope this report will be a starting point for the industry to focus on areas where there is agreement and find specific initiatives. It will take collective action to solve some of the issues at hand, and we look forward to seeing what the manufacturers will do in the near future.”

Investing in a Sustainable Future

Sustainable development has become a key driver for global investments, recognizing the link between sustainable transformation and financial benefits. In 2021, global sustainability investments totaled USD 35.3 trillion, representing over a third of all assets in five of the world’s biggest markets.

Final Thoughts on the Polestar and Rivian Report

The automotive industry must take urgent and decisive action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, and protect the environment. The Pathway Report provides a clear pathway for the industry to follow and highlights the need for collaboration and collective action among automakers to drive rapid momentum toward a sustainable future.

With the report’s release, Polestar and Rivian have shown their commitment to a sustainable future and have encouraged the industry to follow suit. The next few months will be critical for the industry to take action and collaborate to achieve a sustainable future for all.

Click this link to view the findings of the Pathway Report.

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