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General Motors plans to be carbon-neutral by 2040; eliminate LDV tailpipe emissions by 2035

GM plans to become carbon-neutral in its global products and operations by 2040 and has committed to setting science-based targets to achieve carbon neutrality. The company has also signed the Business Ambition Pledge for 1.5⁰C, an urgent call to action from a global coalition of UN agencies, business and industry leaders.

In addition to GM’s carbon goals, the company worked with the Environmental Defense Fund to develop a shared vision of an all-electric future and an aspiration to eliminate tailpipe emissions from new light-duty vehicles by 2035.

GM’s focus will be offering zero-emissions vehicles across a range of price points and working with all stakeholders, including EDF, to build out the necessary charging infrastructure and promote consumer acceptance while maintaining high quality jobs, which will all be needed to meet these ambitious goals.

To reach its goals, GM plans to decarbonize its portfolio by transitioning to battery-electric vehicles or other zero-emissions vehicle technology, sourcing renewable energy and leveraging minimal offsets or credits.

Electrification. The use of GM’s products accounts for 75% of carbon emissions related to this commitment. GM will offer 30 all-electric models globally by mid-decade and 40% of the company’s US models offered will be battery-electric vehicles by the end of 2025. GM is investing $27 billion in electric and autonomous vehicles in the next five years—up from the $20 billion planned before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This investment includes the continued development of GM’s Ultium battery technology, updating facilities such as Factory ZERO in Michigan and Spring Hill Manufacturing in Tennessee to build electric vehicles from globally sourced parts and investing in new sites like Ultium Cells LLC in Ohio as well as manufacturing and STEM jobs.

More than half of GM’s capital spending and product development team will be devoted to electric and electric-autonomous vehicle programs. In the coming years, GM plans to offer an EV for every customer, from crossovers and SUVs to trucks and sedans.

The company will also continue to increase fuel efficiency of its traditional internal combustion vehicles in accordance with regional fuel economy and greenhouse gas regulations. Some of these initiatives include fuel economy improvement technologies, such as Stop/Start, aerodynamic efficiency enhancements, downsized boosted engines, more efficient transmissions and other vehicle improvements, including mass reduction and lower rolling resistance tires.

Renewable Energy. To address emissions from its own operations, GM will source 100% renewable energy to power its US sites by 2030 and global sites by 2035, which represents a five-year acceleration of the company’s previously announced global goal. Today, GM is the 10th largest offtaker of renewable energy in the world and in 2020, the company received a 2020 Green Power Leadership Award from the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Carbon Offsets and Credits. To account for the expected remaining carbon emissions, GM expects to invest in carbon credits or offsets. The company will assess credit and offset solutions in the coming years as the most efficient, equitable and inclusive ideas mature. The company recognizes that offsets must be used sparingly and should reflect a holistic view of mitigating the effects of climate change and helping people thrive around the world.

Supply Chain and Infrastructure. GM’s carbon-neutral commitment applies to its global product portfolio and owned operations. The company is implementing plans today to reduce the impact associated with its supply chain while supporting grids and utilities to power electric vehicles with renewable energy. GM has worked with some of its largest suppliers to create a sustainability council to share best practices, learn from each other and create new standards for the industry. In addition to the council’s work, GM is collaborating with suppliers to set ambitious targets for the supply chain to reduce emissions, increase transparency and source more sustainable materials.

While electric vehicles themselves do not emit tailpipe emissions, it is critical that they be charged with electricity generated from renewable sources such as wind and solar. GM has worked with utilities and developers to support investments in renewable energy found in and around communities that have GM facilities via power purchase agreements and green tariffs.

The company is also working with EVgo to triple the size of the US’ largest public fast-charging network by adding more than 2,700 new fast chargers by the end of 2025, a move set to help accelerate widespread electric vehicle adoption. The new fast chargers will be powered by 100% renewable energy. GM believes that the energy sector is well on its way to a decarbonized grid and that an all-electric future will be supported by renewable infrastructure and technology.



I think that GM deserves a good deal of credit for their decision to announce that they expect to completely phase out internal combustion engines by 2035 and will have 30 new global electric vehicles by 2025 and expect that 40% of their sales in the US will be battery electric by 2025.

Meanwhile, If you look at the link that gryf provided back in early December -- https://media.toyota.co.uk/wp-content/files_mf/1559900303AimingtoPopulariseBEVs.pdf -- and look at slide 4, it seems that Toyota believes that more than 80% of their vehicles will still be powered by internal combustion engines in 2050 although most will be HEVs or PHEVs. According to their future plans, less 10% each will be BEV or FCEV in 2050.

I have put more than 30,000 miles on my Chevrolet Bolt and am generally quite pleased with the driving experience. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, I let at least 20 people drive my car and it never failed to put a smile on their face. Yes, it would be a problem to drive across the country but the batteries are getting better and charging is getting faster. GM seems to have a good deal of confidence in their new Ultium batteries.

A Facebook User

Not hard to do if you go out of business by 2028. GM is really behind here. The Bolt is made by LG chem for the most part. Ford at least makes its own EV with the eStang (even if it is made in mexico). Wake me up when GM is making their own EV under $60,000. If they drop the entire market for vehicles under $60,000 they will cease to exist.

By fall, Rivian and Lordstown will be building vehicles that take the most profitable sales away from GM. It won't make much difference in 2021 with low volumes, but by mid 2022 GM will be under attack from multiple angles.

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