The 2006 documentary, “Who Killed the Electric Car,” appeared to show the auto manufacturing industry in bed with Big Oil, such that battery-powered vehicles never even had a chance. Its hard to believe that just five years later, electric vehicles (“EVs”) have enjoyed a mainstream resurgence that has resulted in people literally lining up to purchase cars that do not run on fossil fuels. A new documentary with the not ironic title, “Revenge of the Electric Car,” opened a week ago in New York and Los Angeles, showing decision-making behind closed doors at major manufacturers including GM, Nissan and Tesla.
This year, the 100% electric Nissan LEAF was released to such enthusiasm that consumers waited months for delivery of their electric car, with overwhelming demand. But Nissan wants to have a bigger environmental and global impact than just its extremely popular electric car. Carlos Ghosn, Nissan CEO, has demonstrated a commitment to electric cars through the billions of dollars the company has invested in the technology.
Revenge of the Electric Car shows that Nissan realizes that eco-friendly vehicles is a long term proposition, and the mainstreaming of electric cars is inevitable.
In addition to its commitment to EVs, Nissan has furthered its dedication to the environment through Green Program 2016, which sets forth the manufacturer’s plans and targets over the next five years to increase its focus on low and no-emission vehicles. Green Program 2016 includes the following focus areas:
1. Reducing CO2 emissions from vehicles and daily corporate activities
2. Increasing use of renewable energy
3. Accelerating recycling efforts.
Nissan has announced that 70% of its research and advanced engineering budget will be spent on environmental technologies in order to reduce CO2 emissions both at its factories and from its cars. By the end of 2016, the company is aiming to sell 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles. To accomplish this goal, Nissan will be introducing an additional four EVs beyond the Nissan LEAF, which is currently available. Further, Nissan desires to be a leading supplier world-wide for EV lithium batteries.
Nissan is also looking to improve fuel economy by 35% and reduce CO2 emissions by 20% for its combustion engine models. It plans to increase the use of recycled materials in its vehicles by 25%, as well.
Nissan CEO Carolos Ghosn states:
“Nissan wants to be part of the solution toward a sustainable society – for the sake of the planet and as a significant competitive advantage and a strategic differentiator in the global manufacturing sector.”
What do you think of Nissan’s Green Program 2016 goals? Do you plan on purchasing an electric car in the near future?