Kia Pledges To Become ‘Sustainable Mobility Solutions Provider’ And Unveils Roadmap To Achieve Carbon Neutrality By 2045
Kia Corporation has set out its vision to become a truly sustainable, responsible, and innovative mobility solutions leader, announcing a commitment to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045.
Kia announced its corporate vision at its recent ‘Kia Sustainability Movement’ virtual presentation. Kia’s vision to become a ‘Sustainable Mobility Solutions Provider’ reflects the company’s approach to sustainability, which is to create sustainable mobility solutions for consumers, communities, and global society.
In the first meaningful step in line with its corporate vision, Kia announced its plan to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045, based on three key pillars – ‘Sustainable Mobility’, ‘Sustainable Planet’ and ‘Sustainable Energy’.
The pillars will guide Kia in its efforts to reduce carbon emissions in all operational facets, from supply, logistics, vehicle production and vehicle use through to disposal of waste. By 2045, Kia plans to reduce 97% of the company’s 2019 level of carbon emissions. The company will attain carbon neutrality by implementing additional measures to fully offset its remaining carbon emissions.
Carbon Neutrality: state of balance between the CO2 emitted into the atmosphere and the CO2 removed from the atmosphere.
“For us, it is not only about setting goals and reaching targets. It is about setting a vision that will inspire others to join the movement to benefit humanity and protect the environment,” said Hosung Song, President and CEO of Kia. “In line with our vision of becoming a sustainable mobility solutions provider, we commit to achieving carbon neutrality by 2045.”
Kia also previewed the Concept EV9 ahead of its AutoMobility LA reveal. The battery electric vehicle (BEV) concept embodies Kia’s commitment to achieving carbon neutrality.
Achieving full electrification in major markets by 2040
The single largest portion of carbon emissions generated by any mass vehicle manufacturer occurs when the vehicle is in daily use and on the road, helping to meet the mobility needs of customers. It is for this important reason that Kia is prioritising the transition from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to a full eco-friendly vehicle line-up. As a result, to achieve zero carbon emissions during the vehicle usage stage, Kia will further accelerate implementation of its mid-to-long term Plan S strategy.
Kia aims to fully electrify its vehicle line-up in Europe by 2035. From 2040, Kia’s line-up in key markets around the globe will also exclusively consist of electrified models, realising zero emissions during daily vehicle use. It is at this stage in the vehicle’s life where Kia will make huge strides in dramatically reducing the single largest culprit of carbon emissions.
Kia is also working with its suppliers to reduce carbon emissions from the parts supply stage. Kia aims to create a carbon emissions monitoring system for its partner companies by 2022 and will provide solutions to its suppliers based on the resulting data. A key element to this plan is the use of ‘green steel’, as the steel industry has traditionally been one of the biggest global carbon emitters.
Green steel: steel produced in an eco-friendly process where the use of fossil fuel is minimised.
Protecting marine ecosystems and offsetting carbon emissions
Kia will initiate a ‘Blue Carbon’ project to proactively make a tangible contribution to preserving the environment instead of just reducing emissions to achieve its carbon neutrality target. The project will focus on marine ecosystems which are one of the most efficient absorbers of carbon.
Blue carbon: carbon absorbed and stored in seaweed and mudflats effectively diminishing the amount of carbon in the atmosphere.
To boost the amount of blue carbon, Kia will restore and preserve Korea’s coastal wetlands in collaboration with external partners. As a part of the endeavour, Kia plans to discuss specific project opportunities with the Korea’s ministry of Oceans and Fisheries. Korea has one of the most extensive tidal mudflat environments in the world, making it advantageous for an increase in the level of blue carbon.
In an effort to build a sustainable future, Kia will also work with ‘The Ocean Cleanup’, the non-profit organisation developing and scaling technologies to rid the world’s oceans of plastic. To effectively rid the oceans of plastic, plastic waste currently in ocean needs to be cleaned and new plastic should be stopped from entering the oceans. ‘The Ocean Cleanup’ to this aim developed ‘Interceptor’ to be deployed in rivers around the world to prevent plastic trash from entering the oceans.
Going forward, Kia will work with ‘The Ocean Cleanup’ to create a resource circulation system. Kia will provide material support to the construction of the Interceptors and will utilise plastic waste gathered from the river cleanup process and use the materials in vehicle production. Kia is planning to increase the company’s percentage of plastic re-use to 20% by 2030.