Climate protection & air quality
Our vehicles: We are developing new standards for climate protection on the road
The Paris Agreement on climate protection establishes the goal of limiting global warming to significantly less than two degrees Celsius compared with the preindustrial level. In their climate protection plans, the signatory countries define their ambitious goals for reducing greenhouse gases overall and in individual sectors. For example, the climate protection plan of the German government aims to reduce total CO2 emissions in the transport sector by 40 to 42 percent relative to 1990 levels by 2030.
EU regulations focus on new vehicles and prescribe the following reduction targets: By 2030, the CO2 emissions of cars should be reduced by 37.5 percent relative to the base values of 2021; those of vans should be reduced by 31 percent. An intermediate target of 15 percent to be achieved by 2025 has been set for each of these two vehicle groups. Heavy-duty commercial vehicles must reduce their CO2 emissions by 15 percent on average relative to the reference period 2019/2020 by 2025 and by 30 percent on average by 2030. Moreover, the overarching EU climate target within the framework of the EU Green Deal was adjusted from the current minus 40 percent to at least minus 55 percent for the period from 1990 to 2030. Against this background, we assume that the EU standards for new vehicles will also become much more stringent.
For us, the Paris Agreement represents more than just an obligation; our commitment to its targets stems from our fundamental convictions. We believe that it is our mission to develop technical innovations that will lead to CO2-neutral mobility around the world. We realize that this mission will require a high level of investment. In order to finance it, we intend to increasingly use new tools such as green bonds in the future. Green bonds offer environment-oriented investors the opportunity to directly participate in the implementation of our technological strategy. However, the broad-based success of low-emission mobility requires not only sustainable investment but also favorable framework conditions. We need ambitious CO2 pricing systems for fossil fuels and the creation of a comprehensive charging infrastructure as well as a hydrogen filling station network.
Our product development takes emissions into account from the start
Daimler has set itself the goal of developing products that are especially environmentally friendly and energy-efficient in their respective market segments. Our environmental and energy guidelines define how we intend to reach this goal. Product development plays a key role in this regard: A vehicle’s environmental impact — including its emissions of CO2 and pollutants — is largely determined during the first phases of its development. The earlier in the development process we take environmental aspects into account, the more efficiently we can minimize the environmental impacts of our vehicles.
We systematically test the environmental friendliness of future products. An important tool in this process is the ongoing documentation of the development process. For every vehicle model and every engine variant, we define specific characteristics and target values — for example, for fuel consumption and pollutant emissions. We also use these target values to assess the milestones we pass in the course of product development. To this end we compare the current status of the project with the target values. If necessary, we initiate corrective measures on the basis of this assessment.
How we embed responsibility for more environmentally friendly vehicles in our organization
Our corporate management is responsible for setting our strategic goals, including targets for reducing our CO2 emissions, and for monitoring our progress toward them. The Product Steering Board (PSB) monitors the development of the car fleet’s CO2 emissions in markets where such emissions are regulated. It is also responsible for providing forecasts. In its evaluations, the PSB takes into account the increasing degree of vehicle electrification and the changes that have been made to legal requirements, for example those related to the introduction of the new WLTP test procedure. The Board of Management then decides which measures need to be implemented. On the market side of the equation, price and volume control measures can also affect our ability to achieve our targets in the short term. For this reason, these measures are also discussed with the Board of Management within the framework of the regular reporting on the current state of label