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Automotive industry to ‘overshoot’ climate target by more than 75 per cent, say Polestar and Rivian

  • Climate change panel’s 1.5 °C target set to be missed, according to report
  • Automotive industry poised to have used all its CO2-equivalent budget by 2035
  • Urgent action is needed, warn EV carmakers Polestar and Rivian
  • Switching to EVs isn’t enough by itself, they say

Time 8:11 am, February 9, 2023

The automotive industry is poised to miss a crucial 1.5 °C target by more than 75 per cent without urgent action.

That’s according to EV carmakers Polestar and Rivian, whose joint Pathway Report says the industry will bypass the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) targets by 2050 without a clear change.

Passenger vehicles currently comprise 15 per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions globally, and the IPCC says these need to be reduced by 43 per cent by 2030.


However, the report, which uses open-source data and emissions modelling from global management consulting firm Kearney, shows that the automotive industry is ‘far off track’ and will have used its full CO2-equivalent budget by 2035 if it doesn’t change.

The IPCC found that a rise of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels will increase the intensity and frequency of ‘extreme events’ and hit resources, ecosystems and food security, as well as other issues.

Fredrika Klarén, Polestar’s head of sustainability, said: ‘Car companies may be on different paths when it comes to brand, design and business strategies, and some won’t even admit that the road to the future is electric.


‘I believe it is, and that the climate crisis is a shared responsibility, and we must look beyond tailpipe emissions.’

The report says the increased speed at which petrol and diesel cars are replaced by EVs will help address the problem.

However, Rivian and Polestar say that won’t be enough on its own and increasing renewable energy in power grids while cutting greenhouse gas emissions across the entire manufacturing supply chain will also help.

Anisa Costa, Rivian’s chief sustainability officer, said: ‘The report’s findings are sobering.

‘Our hope is that this report lays the groundwork for the automotive industry to collaborate in driving progress at the pace and scale we need – and ideally inspiring other industries to do the same.

‘Together, I’m confident we can win the race against time.’

Polestar CEO Jonathan Goodman will be one of the speakers on the manufacturer panel at our inaugural Car Dealer Live conference on Thursday, March 9.


Car Dealer Live – the future of the car dealer – exclusive conference features talks from leading car dealers, Google and Auto Trader among much more. Find out the full event details and book tickets.

Jack Evans's avatar

Jack Evans is the head of editorial for Car Dealer parent company Blackball Media. An experienced motoring journalist, he covers the latest car launches, motoring news and produces a variety of features for this website.



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