When the United Nations adopted its internationally recognized sustainable development goal in September of 2015, it was a historic moment. As an automobile manufacturer, the BMW Group has also pledged to reduce its emission footprint by one-third by 2030, on a per-vehicle basis. A detailed ten-year plan has been developed, with interim goals for every year.
BMW AG Management Board Chairman Oliver Zipse announced that sustainability and the efficient use of resources are now central to the strategic focus of the BMW Group. “We will report on our progress annually and measure ourselves against these targets. The compensation of our Board of Management and executive management will also be tied to this”.
To drive decarbonization in manufacturing, BMW is aiming to 100% renewable energy at all production facilities. As a further milestone in this direction, the automotive giant has now started sourcing aluminum, produced using solar-powered manufacturing. Earlier this week, Emirates Global Aluminium announced that BMW Group is the first customer for EGA’s CelestiAL aluminum, made with the power of the desert sun. EGA is the first company in the world to produce aluminum commercially using solar power.
EGA has supplied metal to BMW Group since 2013 for use in the German carmaker’s engines and other parts. After signing the agreement, EGA will supply 43,000 tonnes of CelestiAL aluminum to BMW Group per year. Aluminum is a key material for the automobile sector but is regarded as high-impact and hard-to-abate in terms of environmental impact. Using solar aluminum from EGA will reduce BMW Group’s emissions by 222,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
“Aluminium is lightweight, strong, and infinitely recyclable, and that is why it has an important role to play in developing a more sustainable society, but it also matters how sustainably aluminum is made. The use of solar electricity for producing aluminum is a major step in this direction,” said Abdulnasser Bin Kalban, CEO of EGA.
EGA’s sourcing of solar power from the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park through Dubai’s electricity grid is tracked and traced through the use of the International Renewable Energy Certification System. The Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park has a current installed capacity of some 1,013 MW capacity to eventually reach 5,000 MW by 2030.
Pioneer in Sustainability
The BMW Group has a long history of sustainability. Back in 1973, it became the first company in the automotive industry to employ an environment officer. In 1992, it began to participate in the UN climate conferences. And almost ten years later, in 2001, it committed to the ten goals of the UN Global Compact.
The company has already fulfilled almost all their sustainability targets that they set in 2012 for 2020 or are in the final stretch towards achieving them.
Furthermore, the group has set ambitious targets to successfully tackle a variety of new challenges. The company has a view that only by incorporating sustainability strategy into corporate strategy, we can achieve real environmental and climate protection.