Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) is committing to aggressively reduce its carbon output in the United States by entering into Virtual Power Purchase Agreements (VPPAs). It will use them to reduce emissions from its North American operations by up to forty percent over the next three years.
The move represents another major step towards Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050 goal of cutting global emissions from plant operations to zero by the year 2050.
Under the VPPAs, which the company expects to launch later this year, TMNA will contract with renewable energy providers to generate wind and solar power that will be provided directly to regional electric grids. The supply of renewable power is expected to reduce the use of fossil fuels while improving the sustainability of the electric grid in the area.
By powering its operations from the enhanced grid and applying Renewable Energy Credits earned by funding the generation of renewable electricity, Toyota expects to substantially offset emissions from its facilities in North America.
Toyota’s VPPA program is the result of more than six years of research into how best to reduce and offset emissions from the company’s operations, working in partnership with MIT, the National Renewable Energy Lab, the Rocky Mountain Institute, and others. It is part of a wider effort across the company to reduce the environmental impact of enterprise operations as it also works to limit vehicle emissions.
This endeavor supports Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050. Launched in 2015, the Challenge sets out six objectives for the company’s global operations, including:
- A ninety percent reduction in global average CO2 emissions from new vehicles vs. 2010 levels;
- The complete elimination of CO2 emissions from the entire vehicle life cycle; zero emissions at all manufacturing plants worldwide;
- Minimizing water usage and implementing water discharge management protocols;
- Promoting global deployment of end-of-life vehicle treatment and recycling, and;
- Connecting and promoting nature conservation activities outside of the Toyota Group in the communities where we operate.