Polestar 0 project: the task force
True change always seems like an insurmountable obstacle. But if it’s needed, we have to find a way. Like bringing the car industry into a climate-neutral future, for example. Because as the saying goes: it always seems impossible until it’s done.
But Polestar was not built by those who stood by. We were built by those who challenged conventions, dedicated to making the impossible possible. And this conviction will also help us realise Polestar 0 project, our goal to create the first truly climate-neutral car by 2030, as announced earlier this year.
Truly climate-neutral means that we will not rely on offsetting, but reduce emissions throughout the supply chain and production, and by doing so, change the way that cars are made.
Reaching full climate neutrality throughout the value chain, however, is an unprecedented challenge for such a complex product as a car. An internal task force is up and running under engineer and automotive veteran Hans Pehrson’s leadership, placing it right at the heart of our R&D effort.
The project has been split into three stages, leading up to our 2030 target. The first phase, in which preparations are well underway, involves launching an open call for research and collaboration. This global call will not only address suppliers, but entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, universities, researchers, authorities, and consumers at large.
In addition, the task force is also focusing on establishing collaborations to jointly find all sources, down to the smallest component, of CO2e in the entire supply chain. Every step, from material extraction (or recycled source) to vehicle handover, needs to be evaluated based on whether solutions are readily available, or if further research is needed.
“Climate action is a matter of collaboration,” Hans Pehrson opines. “Achieving climate-neutral modern products is an absolute must for our future. Cars are complex, they consist of tens of thousands of components and rely on intricate layers of suppliers and sub manufacturers. Making the car climate-neutral is therefore not only an extremely important challenge but an extremely difficult one. Understanding and accepting the challenge is the first step, getting all the way will require that we collaborate in ways that have never been done before. This is not a solo mission.”
The call for research is to be followed by advanced engineering and product development.
Polestar 0 project is the biggest challenge we could set for ourselves. And it will become even harder as we get closer to zero. But rather than fixating on the obstacles, the industry should look at the risk of not having harder goals and recall that it always seems impossible until it's done. Let’s not waste another minute.
When in Rovaniemi
Do as the locals do. Words of wisdom that any seasoned traveller is familiar with. They don’t just govern behavior, however. They speak to the importance of having an open mind, embracing new customs, and adapting to one’s surroundings. There are equivalents in all languages. In English, one is told that “when in Rome, do as the Romans do”. It counts for the Italian capital, just as it counts for northern Finland. Which is exactly where we headed this winter.