Economics and ecology in harmony – environmental protection at Audi
Audi is committed to the sustainable use of raw materials and resources for the conservation of the environment. Audi takes a transparent approach to environmental protection at the company and gets every employee involved in the related activities. The company implements its environment-policy goals over the long term. As a party to the fifth Bavarian Environmental Pact, AUDI AG is making an important contribution to environmental protection.
On the road to sustainable mobility
The key here is for the environmental balance of an automobile’s entire lifecycle to be optimized before the first kilometer is driven. AUDI AG has set itself the target of reducing its specific CO2 emissions by 25 percent relative to 2010 by the year 2018.
- There are plans to reduce CO2 emissions associated with the supply of energy at the German sites by 40 percent per reference unit by 2020.
- Environmental protection also entails conserving resources, including with respect to noise emissions, wastewater and energy consumption. Once again with 2010 as the baseline, the Group is also striving for an improvement of 25 percent improvement per reference unit in the key environmental metrics for energy, fresh water, waste and volatile organic compounds (VOC) by 2018.
- Audi is pursuing a vision of completely CO2-neutral and wastewater-free manufacturing of all vehicles made at its Ingolstadt headquarters. In this context, the Audi Group’s corporate carbon footprint was certified in 2014 according to the globally valid standard ISO 14064. Audi is thus the first manufacturer in the premium segment with this certification. Based on detailed calculations, the Group’s total emissions of greenhouse gases are transparent along the entire value chain.
Reducing the ecological footprint
- Recycling: The Ingolstadt, Győr (Hungary) and San José Chiapa (Mexico) production locations feature modern paint shops. Dry separation of the paint particles, air recirculation and exhaust air treatment result in significant reductions in thermal energy and water consumption as well as CO2 emissions compared with conventional systems. Emissions of VOCs will be reduced by over 90 percent.
- Water recycling: To save water, Audi is building a membrane bio-reactor in Ingolstadt. Three treatment stages turn wastewater into hygienically safe process water. The result is a one-third reduction in the amount of fresh water required in Production.
- Green electricity: Audi is increasingly turning to green electricity for its production operations. Audi has been building cars exclusively with green electricity in Ingolstadt since early 2012. The high-tech Audi Neuburg site and the Audi Münchsmünster production site procure 100-percent renewably generated electricity, as does the Brussels site.
- Less CO2:
- Since the fall of 2015, the new geothermal plant near Győr, Hungary, has covered approximately 60 percent of Audi Hungaria’s heating requirements.
- Audi uses green trains powered by renewable electricity to transport cars from Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm to the North Sea port of loading in Emden, Germany.
- Two modern plug-in hybrid locomotives are used at Ingolstadt for shunting work, significantly reducing emissions.
- Photovoltaic systems are in operation at many Group sites.
- In 2015, Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. became the first company worldwide to be certified by DNV GL (Det Norske Veritas Germanischer Lloyd) for CO2‑neutral production in the program Carbon Neutrality.
- Environmental protection beyond the plant walls: The Eichenwald research project began in 2008. In addition to a test area near Ingolstadt, the project now covers various areas near the sites in Ingolstadt, Neckarsulm, Győr (Hungary), Brussels (Belgium), Sant’Agata Bolognese (Italy) and San José Chiapa (Mexico) with a total of 100,000 trees.
- Protecting the natural basis for life: The commitment of AUDI AG to the environment also manifests in the Audi Environmental Foundation.With an endowment of five million euros, the foundation supports species conservation, environmental education, science and research (www.audi-stiftung-für-umwelt.de).
- The Audi Stiftung for Umwelt GmbH has now awarded the Sustainable Resource Management Award (SRM) for the sixth time.
- In December 2014, the Audi Environment Foundation started a species conservation project in which disused transformer substations are converted into “beacons of biodiversity.” The project was recognized in 2016 within the framework of the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity.
- The Audi Environment Foundation is also supporting a very special bee project: The HOBOS high-tech beehive is a joint research station with the University of Würzburg at Audi’s Münchsmünster production location. Cutting-edge technologies provide novel insights into the honey bee superorganism to anyone anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day.