Toyota Motor Corporation has developed an airless paint atomizer that uses static electricity instead of air to replace the conventional air paint atomizers used in the vehicle body painting process. The newly developed airless painter, the first of its kind, achieves more than 95% coating efficiency (the amount of paint... Read more →


In Germany, the DeMoBat collaborative project is developing a robot-assisted dismantling factory for traction batteries and electric motors for EVs. These processes would constitute and important element of a resource-efficient and sustainable circular economy for electromobility. The traction battery in particular represents a central cost factor of electromobility and also... Read more →


Mining giant Rio Tinto will invest around $1 billion over the next five years to support the delivery of its new climate change targets and a company objective for net zero emissions from operations by 2050. The new targets for 2030 are: A further 30% reduction in Rio Tinto’s emissions... Read more →


A study by a team from MIT, with colleagues from Alfred University, UC Berkeley, and RIT, has found that supplies of cobalt—a critical material in some battery chemistries—is adequate in the short-term (up to 2030), but that the industry needs to invest in additional efficient refining and recycling capacity, so... Read more →


Adamas: Nickel deployment in passenger EV batteries increased 39% in 2019

In 2019, global deployment of nickel in passenger EV batteries amounted to 59,271 tonnes, an increase of 39% over the amount deployed in 2018, according to Adamas Intelligence’s web-based EV Battery Capacity and Battery Metals Tracker. By EV type, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) were responsible for 76% of all passenger... Read more →


ASI certifies one Novelis facility against Performance Standard, two against Chain of Custody Standard

The Aluminum Stewardship Initiative (ASI) announced that Novelis’ plant in Ohle, Germany has been successfully certified against the ASI Performance Standard for responsible production, sourcing and stewardship of aluminum. The Ohle plant supplies foil and packaging products to such diverse applications as coffee capsules, foil trays for the food industry,... Read more →


A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) finds that, taken together with public transport, walking and cycling for short city journeys provide the greatest benefits for both human health and the environment in urban areas. The introduction and rapid uptake of app-based vehicle sharing schemes can also have... Read more →


Daimler announced a trial and development partnership with Israeli cleantech company UBQ Materials to explore the use of UBQ’s climate-positive material in the production of automobile parts. Daimler is also promoting the use of UBQ across its logistics manufacturers to offset carbon footprint throughout the Daimler supply chain. Daimler is... Read more →


BMW Group first automaker to join Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance

BMW Group has become the first member of the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA) in the automotive sector. IRMA is a precedent-setting global certification program for industrial-scale mine sites. With growing awareness and demand for ecologically and socially-responsible products, jewelers, electronics businesses, auto makers and others have sought assurances... Read more →


A study by an international team of researchers warns that the global transition to global low-carbon energy technology could be at risk unless new international agreements and governance mechanisms are put in place to ensure a sustainable supply of rare minerals and metals. Their paper is published in Science. Climate... Read more →


Copper use in automotive wire harness will continue to grow according to new research commissioned by the International Copper Association (ICA). The research, conducted by Martec Group, found that the average weight of copper use per vehicle in automotive wire harnesses globally increased from 11.0 kg in 2016 to 12.6... Read more →


The light metal foundry of the BMW Group plant in Landshut has been certified for its sustainable use of aluminum. It meets the standards of the Aluminum Stewardship Initiative (ASI), an international organization that is supported by environmental and industrial associations, aluminum producers and manufacturing companies. ASI has defined sustainability... Read more →


BMW Group signs €540M supply contract with Ganfeng for lithium from mines in Australia

As part of its electromobility expansion, the BMW Group is deepening its existing business relationship with Ganfeng Lithium based in Jiangxi (China). The two companies have signed a 5-year (2020 - 2024) supply contract for the lithium needed as a key raw material for battery cells. Ganfeng is the world’s... Read more →


FCA joins Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network to help build a more ethical EV supply chain

FCA has joined the Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), an industry collaboration using blockchain technology to support sustainable, responsible sourcing and production practices from mine to market. Built on the IBM Blockchain Platform and assured by RCS Global Group, the RSBN is on track to become commercially operational by spring... Read more →


Volkswagen Group says environmental impact per produced vehicle down 37% from 2010

The Volkswagen Group says that it is making faster progress towards sustainable and efficient production while also making good progress towards reducing its production costs. We are producing more environmentally friendly than ever. From 2010 to the end of 2019, the environmental impact per produced vehicle is expected to drop... Read more →


ArcelorMittal invests in new sustainability program across Europe; ResponsibleSteel site certification

ArcelorMittal plans to roll out a new sustainability program across Europe, aiming to secure ResponsibleSteel site certification for all its ArcelorMittal Europe - Flat Products sites. The 12-month program will enable each site to prove that the company’s production processes meet rigorously defined standards across a broad range of social,... Read more →


ICLEI and Taoyuan City, Taiwan launch first global city network for sustainable urban freight

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and Taoyuan City in Taiwan have launched a unique global community that recognizes the fundamental importance of sustainable urban freight for sustainable urban developments. Called ICLEI EcoLogistics Community, it is the first city network in the world committed to a sustainable urban freight future.... Read more →


CARB designing Sustainable Transportation Equity Project

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is designing the Sustainable Transportation Equity Project Program, and will hold its second program design workgroup in Los Angeles later this month. STEP aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase access to clean transportation, and address community resident’s transportation needs by funding planning, clean... Read more →


Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network moves towards operationalization; Volvo Cars joins; launched by IBM, Ford, Volkswagen Group

The Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), a blockchain network committed to strengthening human rights and environmental protection in mineral supply chains (earlier post), announced that its digital supply chain for cobalt has moved beyond pilot phase and is progressing toward use in live production computing environments from spring 2020. Built... Read more →


While physical logistics networks remain indispensable, electrification in local transport is already making an important contribution. However, widespread commercial use of electric drive on long-haul and heavy-duty routes is not yet feasible. This is where sustainable fuels play a crucial role as they could be pivotal in reducing the climate... Read more →


UQ study highlights ESG challenges for critical metals supplies

In a new study published in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology, University of Queensland researchers have highlighted the effects environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks will have on the global supply of metals without major innovations in the mining industry. Research on metal criticality has predominately assessed the supply risk... Read more →


France’s high court rules in favor of ending tax benefits for palm oil diesel

France’s Constitutional Council, the highest constitutional authority in the country, ruled in favor of excluding palm oil from the list of biofuels that enjoy tax incentives. The decision enters into force on 1 January, 2020. Oil company Total has estimated it is worth between €70 million and €80 million per... Read more →


Audi has set the goal of successively reducing vehicle-specific CO2 emissions by 30% by 2025 compared with reference year 2015 and over the entire product lifecycle. In the long term, Audi is pursuing the vision of CO2-neutral mobility and aims to be climate-neutral throughout the company on balance by 2050.... Read more →


Advances in the production, use and reuse of batteries mean that the technology could become the most significant intervention to keep global warming within the limits set by the Paris Agreement on climate change between now and 2030, according to a new report commissioned by the Global Battery Alliance, a... Read more →


Mercedes-Benz partners with Farasis for battery cells from carbon-neutral production

Mercedes-Benz announced a partnership with China-based Farasis Energy (earlier post) for the supply of battery cells produced with electricity from renewable energies as well as recycling and the observance of human rights in the supply chain. With Ambition 2039, we have set the course for sustainable mobility. In addition to... Read more →


The aluminum producer Hydro now supplies sustainable aluminum for the battery housing of the Audi e-tron EV. The material is processed and manufactured along the entire process chain in an environmentally friendly manner and under socially acceptable working conditions. This has been confirmed by the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) with... Read more →


Toyota to reduce emissions from North American operations by up to 40% by using VPPAs

Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) is committing to reduce its carbon output in the United States by entering into Virtual Power Purchase Agreements (VPPAs). It will use them to reduce emissions from its North American operations by up to 40% over the next 3 years. The move represents another major... Read more →


Queen’s University Belfast researchers have discovered that the scaly-foot snail, otherwise known as the sea pangolin, is the first species at risk of extinction due to potential deep sea mining by humans. The research is published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. The scaly-foot snail. Chrysomallon squamiferum, also known as the... Read more →


Volkswagen issues new corporate environmental mission statement: “goTOzero”

The Volkswagen Group is bundling all its measures in environmental protection under its new “goTOzero” environmental mission statement. With the new Group Environmental Policy, the Group is giving itself and its stakeholders a clear orientation. Our efforts to improve environmental protection cover the entire product cycle, from development, production and... Read more →


Volkswagen Group introducing worldwide Sustainability Rating for suppliers

As of 1 July 2019, the Volkswagen Group will introduce a worldwide Sustainability Rating for its suppliers. This will enable the company to assess the sustainability conduct of its business partners in its supply chain with regard to risks relating to human rights, environmental protection and corruption. We are convinced... Read more →


ISS ESG awards Valeo pole position in ratings for its CSR policy and the quality of its governance

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) rating agency ISS ESG has awarded Valeo pole position in its ESG performance rating of global companies (auto components industry, 64 companies assessed). Valeo has also achieved Prime status for its excellent performance. Valeo scored particularly well in the three areas identified by ISS ESG as... Read more →


BMW Group opens >$1B plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico; digitalization and new sustainability benchmarks

The BMW Group officially opened the company’s new automotive plant in San Luis Potosi in Mexico. The company has invested more than US$1 billion in the new production location. The plant, which already employs 2,500 people, will have a capacity of up to 175,000 units per year once the ramp-up... Read more →


SEAT reduces waste by 34% since 2010, expects to achieve 60% reduction by 2025

Since 2010, SEAT, a member of the Volkswagen Group, has improved its production-related environmental footprint by 34% on average with measures to emit less CO2 and fewer volatile organic compounds, generate less waste and consume less water and energy. Over the next few months, the company will implement measures designed... Read more →


Porsche launches ideas competition for sustainable mobility; €20,000 in prize money

At ‘re:publica’, the digital conference in Berlin, Porsche launched the ideas competition ‘Mobility for a Better World’. Together with its partners, Porsche is looking for fresh ideas and technology for the sustainable future of mobility. Start-ups, students and developers can now submit their projects. A total of €20,000 euros in... Read more →


Volkswagen Group collaborating with Minespider to use blockchain to trace raw material back to point of origin; pilot project on lead

The Volkswagen Group and blockchain specialist Minespider are collaborating to optimize raw material supply chains, eliminate sources of error, and guarantee social and ecological standards. The two will set up a pilot project to achieve transparency in the the global supply chain for lead. Starting in April, Volkswagen will work... Read more →


Volkswagen Group joins collaboration for responsible sourcing of strategic minerals using blockchain; focus on cobalt

Volkswagen has joined an open industry collaboration for the responsible sourcing of strategic minerals that will use blockchain technology to increase efficiency, sustainability and transparency in global mineral supply chains. Ford Motor Company, Huayou Cobalt, IBM, LG Chem and RCS Global announced the collaboration earlier this year. (Earlier post.) Joining... Read more →


Researchers from the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics in China have selectively synthesized gasoline- and jet-fuel range C7-C8 cycloalkanes and aromatics by the methanolysis of poly(ethyleneterephthalate) (PET) waste, followed by the solvent-free hydrogenation and hydrodeoxygenation (HDO). The C7-C8 cycloalkanes and aromatics can be used as gasoline or additives to improve... Read more →


SEAT has lowered water consumption per car produced by 31% over past 8 years

SEAT has succeeded in lowering its water consumption per car produced by 31% in the past 8 years and is moving towards the goal of achieving 38% by 2025. The paint workshop and the rain test booth are the areas that consume the most water and where most progress has... Read more →


Audi has put a new service-water supply center into operation at the Ingolstadt site. In conjunction with the existing treatment plant, about half of the wastewater produced at the site can now be recycled and treated for reuse. In this way, Audi will saves up to 500,000 cubic meters of... Read more →


In the UK, steelmakers and university experts will partner in a 7-year, £35-million (US$45-million) research network called SUSTAIN. SUSTAIN is led by Swansea University, partnered with the Universities of Sheffield and Warwick, and involves more than twenty partners across the UK steel industry: companies, trade bodies, academic experts and research... Read more →


Ford, Huayou Cobalt, IBM, LG Chem, RCS Global launch blockchain pilot to address concerns in strategic mineral supply chains; cobalt to start

Ford Motor Company, Huayou Cobalt, IBM, LG Chem and RCS Global will use blockchain technology to trace and validate ethically sourced minerals in an effort to support human rights and environmental protection while helping infuse more transparency into global mineral supply chains. The group, which includes participants at each major... Read more →


Researchers at Kyoto University in Japan are proposing the selective dismantling of certain components from end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) to increase the recycling potential of precious metals (PMs). In a paper in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology, they report that, in Japan, totals of 33–53% of PMs in ELVs... Read more →


BMW Group, BASF SE, Samsung SDI and Samsung Electronics launch cross-industry project to support sustainable cobalt mining

As part of a cross-industry initiative, the BMW Group, BASF SE, Samsung SDI and Samsung Electronics have launched a joint cobalt pilot project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. A contract to this effect between the companies, together with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, will aim... Read more →


Lithium Australia NL reported that its wholly owned subsidiary VSPC Ltd has successfully produced Li-ion battery cathode material, and Li-ion batteries (LIBs), from tri-lithium phosphate produced directly from mine waste using the SiLeach process. SiLeach background. During conventional processing, lithium is recovered only from spodumene concentrates, not lithium micas, which... Read more →


A team led by Kanazawa University in Japan has developed a cleaner method for the recycling of several rare earths (REs) such as yttrium (Y) and europium (Eu) used as phosphors in fluorescent lamps (FLs). End-of-life FLs are a potentially huge source of REs, but harsh and polluting processes are... Read more →


Audi and Umicore developing closed-loop recycling for high-voltage batteries; 95%+ recovery of key elements

Audi and Umicore have successfully completed phase one of their strategic research cooperation for battery recycling. The two partners are developing a closed loop for components of high-voltage batteries that can be used again and again. Particularly valuable materials are set to become available in a raw materials bank. Even... Read more →


BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore partner to develop sustainable life-cycle loop for EV batteries in Europe

The BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore have formed a joint technology consortium in order to work closely together on the continued development of a complete and sustainable value chain for battery cells for electrified vehicles in Europe. The chief objective is to make battery cells sustainable by establishing a closed... Read more →


Audi is the first automobile manufacturer worldwide to receive a certificate from the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI). With the Performance Standard certification, the ASI confirms that Audi meets the ASI requirements for industrial users of aluminum and sustainably designs and manufactures the aluminum components of the battery housing of the... Read more →


The Volkswagen brand has introduced a new production strategy—TRANSFORM.TOGETHER—which targets a 30% increase in productivity worldwide by 2025 compared to 2018. Production is therefore making a major contribution to achieving the profitability target of over 6% for the brand. We must invest heavily in our future. Electromobility, autonomous driving, new... Read more →


Audi is now the first premium manufacturer to produce automobiles completely free of wastewater. At its site in San José Chiapa, Mexico, the company is using a new water treatment process that collects 100 percent of the wastewater produced there, purifies it and feeds large volumes of clean water back... Read more →