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Volvo partners with WWF to reduce CO2 emissions

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Volvo partners with WWF to reduce CO2 emissions
Volvo Group CEO Leif Johansson in a 2007 file photo
12:08 CET+01:00
Sweden's Volvo Group announced on Thursday that it will become the world's first vehicle manufacturer to join the World Wide Fund for Nature's (WWF) Climate Savers Program.

As a WWF partner, Volvo's truck companies have pledged to reduce CO2 emissions from vehicles manufactured from 2009 to 2014 by 13 million tonnes. Independent technical experts will oversee the results.

"The partnership with WWF means that we are raising our already-ambitious goals in relation to cutting the CO2 emissions of our products. Our shared vision is that future transport will be CO2-neutral," Volvo CEO Leif Johansson said in a statement.

The WWF Climate Savers Programme calls on multinational companies to cut their CO2 emissions. These companies have promised to reduce their CO2 emissions in accordance with an agreement between the WWF, the company and independent technical experts.

"This is the first time we've engaged an outside party - in this case, the world's largest environmental organization - to oversee that we deliver what we've promised. That is unique for a global vehicle manufacturer," said Johansson.

The agreed goal must be more ambitious than what the company has planned before, which means that the company will lead its own industry in the reduction of greenhouse gases.

The agreement between Volvo and WWF will apply to Mack Trucks, Volvo Trucks, Renault Trucks and UD Trucks.

The total volume of CO2 emitted during the trucks' lifetimes will be cut by 13 million tonnes compared with 2008 models through the introduction of new fuel economy technologies. The emissions are equivalent to the total amount emitted in Sweden every three months.

To achieve this goal, Volvo will produce a truck prototype with 20 percent lower fuel consumption than the equivalent 2008 model. In addition, Volvo will produce trucks for the commercial market that run on renewable gas before 2014.

Volvo will also reduce CO2 emissions from its production plants by 500,000 tonnes, or 12 percent of 2008's output, before 2014.

Volvo's environmental initiatives are driven by three integrated factors: company-driven initiatives, favourable legislation and external partnerships.

In 2007, the Volvo Group presented the world's first CO2-neutral vehicle plant in Ghent in Belgium with wind-generated electricity. The long-term ambition is that all plants will be CO2-neutral.

"As the first vehicle manufacturer to be selected to participate in the Climate Savers Program, we have been presented with a real challenge. But by focusing on lower CO2-emissions, we believe that we can create more value for our customers' business while contributing to sustainable development at the same time," said Johansson.

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