The most complete elaboration yet of Volkswagen‘s (VW) vision of low-carbon e-mobility comes in the form of the new e-Golf, which is due to arrive at participating Volkswagen of America dealer showrooms in select U.S. states later this year.
In addition to the 2015 e-Golf’s zero tailpipe emissions, VW of America struck up a partnership with 3Degrees to purchase carbon offset credits in California and around the U.S. to offset greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with its production and distribution, as well as those from battery charging for up to 36,000 miles of driving.
VW also announced it is partnering with U.S. solar PV manufacturer SunPower to offer e-Golf owners “premier access” to SunPower’s upcoming home solar energy storage solution. Rounding out the e-mobility package, VW chose Bosch Automotive Service Solutions as its preferred home EV charging and installation services provider, while ChargePoint was chosen to provide EV charging stations to the VW U.S. dealer network and to provide e-Golf owners in the U.S. access to over 18,000 charging stations across the country.
A holistic approach to low-carbon personal transportation
“Through these innovative collaborations, Volkswagen will be one of the first high-volume manufacturers to deliver a truly holistic approach to ultra-low-carbon mobility,” VW explains a press release. Added Oliver Schmidt, environment and engineering office general manager for Volkswagen of America:
“Volkswagen feels it is important to look beyond the benefits of driving a vehicle without tailpipe emissions and to take a holistic approach to e-mobility. We now have the ability to offer offsets that approximate the emissions created from production, distribution and the initial 36,000 miles of use.”
Added 3Degrees President Steve McDougal:
“Volkswagen is showing leadership by including carbon offsets standard with this e-Golf electric vehicle. As more people choose low and no emission cars, Volkswagen is making it possible – and easy – to think comprehensively about the greenhouse gas emissions profile of a vehicle.”
An ultra low-carbon e-mobility partnership
VW will be working with renewable energy and carbon offset services provider 3Degrees to help determine the carbon offset projects it will invest in as part of the e-Golf e-mobility program. Volkswagen of America has already chosen forestry conservation and landfill gas capture projects in California and Texas to offset GHG emissions produced from e-Golf manufacturing and distribution, as well as EV charging for the initial 36,000 miles of driving.
VW of America’s purchase of carbon offset credits will support the Garcia River Conservation-Based Forest Management Project, a 24,000-acre native redwood forest preserve in Mendocino County, California. The funds will be used to increase carbon sequestration and storage while also helping restore natural wildlife habitat.
The automaker is also purchasing carbon offset credits to support the Big River and Salmon Creek Forest in Mendocino. Past unsustainable logging and forestry practices fragmented the 16,000-acree native Douglas fir and redwood forest, which the Conservation Fund – thanks in part to VW’s carbon credit purchase – is now protecting through a land purchase.
VW has also purchased carbon offset credits to support the McKinney Landfill project in Texas. There, methane and other GHGs– the result of anaerobic decomposition within the landfill — are being captured, reducing odors as well as providing energy in the form of electricity and heat. Emissions reductions are being verified, validated and registered using the Climate Action Reserve’s Landfill Project Protocol.
The partnership with SunPower means e-Golf owners will be able to produce and store clean, renewable electricity for use in the home, as well as charge their EVs. “Investing in a residential SunPower solar system is a reliable, cost-effective way for Volkswagen customers to help manage household electricity costs and charge their electric vehicle with emissions-free energy,” SunPower President and CEO Tom Werner said.
“Partnering with Volkswagen is a natural fit for SunPower, given our shared passion for delivering innovative, alternative energy solutions that help customers power their lives sustainably, and for the long term.”
Rounding out VW’s vision of e-mobility, Bosch Automotive Service Solutions will offer e-Golf owners EV charging and installation services. Bosch will provide e-Golf owners with Power Max, a 240-volt EV charging unit, at “highly competitive prices,” as well as full-service installation for qualified e-Golf drivers.
Finally, VW chose ChargePoint to provide VW-branded EV charging stations at all authorized e-Golf dealerships. E-Golf owners will also have access to ChargePoint’s over 18,000 EV charging stations across the U.S.