Volkswagen is on its way to zero. In concrete terms, this means: the company has committed itself to the targets of the Paris Agreement and the EU’s European Green Deal. The long-term goal is to become completely carbon-neutral by 2050. This is a marathon that starts with a sprint: Volkswagen’s goal for 2030 is to reduce emissions per vehicle in Europe by 40 percent compared to 2018, which means that each Volkswagen vehicle will then emit 17 tonnes less CO2 on average throughout its life-cycle. Volkswagen is eager to make a substantial contribution to mitigating climate change and, at the same time, become the most coveted brand for sustainable mobility.
Volkswagen is taking a holistic approach to decarbonisation, which is why its Way to Zero goes beyond vehicle electrification to include the entire vehicle life-cycle. Between now and 2025 alone, the company will invest approximately €14 billion in decarbonisation measures that will focus on four central pillars. The first pillar is continuing the accelerated electrification of the product portfolio. The second pillar is decarbonising supply chains and production, the cause of half of an electric car’s total carbon emissions. The third pillar is the consistent use of green energy during the usage phase; this will address the remaining 50% of emissions. The fourth pillar is the recycling of batteries.
Volkswagen does not regard the Way to Zero as a cost factor, but as a genuine competitive advantage. In the future, employees, customers and investors will attach priority to companies who put social responsibility at the heart of everything they do. Sustainability will become a decisive factor for long-term business success. However, one thing that is clear is that Volkswagen will be unable to decarbonise mobility on its own. This task calls for the worlds of politics, business and society to pull together, find good ideas and make bold investments.