Sustainable materials and the consideration of environmental effects are the building blocks of modern, future-ready vehicle architecture and are also reflected in the company strategy.
The long service life of Porsche sports cars, their high-quality workmanship and the use of low-wear materials are all part and parcel of the Porsche principle. The company focuses on the environmental effects of its cars at every step across their entire life cycle – from the acquisition of raw materials through to manufacture, use and disposal.
Electric cars do not cause environmental damage when they are being driven, which helps to improve air quality in built-up areas. The existing ecological impact involved in the production phase of electric cars, which results from the raw materials and production processes used, may be reduced even further in the future. Porsche therefore works continuously with its suppliers to achieve improvements in battery manufacture – for example, by using power drawn from renewable energy sources during the production of battery cells. It aims to reduce the deployment of the raw materials used in the traction battery while increasing the energy density and performance. Module-level repair concepts for performing necessary repair work on the traction battery can also help conserve resources. Porsche teams up with the Volkswagen Group and partners to enhance existing recycling procedures and to ensure that even more raw materials can be returned to circulation in the future. At the same time, the company is working on a pilot project in which used traction batteries are recycled as stationary energy stores as part of a second-life concept following the end of the electric car life cycle. This represents another significant contribution to the conservation of resources.
In order to manufacture the most environmentally friendly products possible, the relevant environmental aspects play a key role even in pre-development – for example, during the testing of renewable raw materials for interior trim and load-bearing components or as part of the project award process. In selected assemblies of the Porsche Taycan, renewable raw materials are already being used as standard for load-bearing assemblies in the interior. This further reduces the environmental impact and also the weight.
In addition to the ongoing development of technical solutions and the search for alternative materials, Porsche is intensifying efforts to sensitise its employees and suppliers to aspects of sustainability. Across the entire value chain, this promotes the shared development of alternatives to ecologically or socially incompatible production processes and materials.
In accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative Standards, information provided on the topic of “sustainable materials” contributes to the reporting requirements of GRI 301: Materials.
Energy and emissions during production
Environmentally conscious and energy-efficient activity at all sites and across all levels is an essential element of Porsche’s day-to-day business. A Group-wide environment and energy management policy continually checks all work processes along the entire value chain with regard to their ecological impact and any irregularities. Internal sets of rules and strategic guiding principles provide the relevant frame of reference. A dedicated Group guideline defines standardised procedures and responsibilities within the Porsche Group. This supports the Group companies in the systematic investigation, observance and checking of the regulatory environmental and energy requirements. Porsche’s clear objective is a zero-impact factory, featuring production without any negative impact on the environment.
The energy and environment management policy covers emissions (air/noise) and soil protection, dealing with contaminated sites, hazardous materials and waste, water and nature conservation, and energy and resource efficiency. Responsibility for, and the systematic implementation of, the necessary steps lies with the Executive Board for Production and Logistics, supported by the Environment and Energy Management department. The fundamental aim is that every Porsche employee should be informed about the effects of his or her work on the environment. Every employee is called upon to observe the Group and company guidelines in order to minimise, or ideally avoid, any negative impact on the environment.
Within the scope of the Porsche Strategy 2025 Plus, the strategy field of sustainability in production defines short-term, medium-term and long-term measures. The environment and energy efficiency strategy and the company’s own environmental policy are additional strategic guiding principles. In this way the company is implementing a requirement of the international standards for environmental and energy management, ISO 14001 and ISO 50001, around which Porsche’s internal specifications and processes are based. At its Zuffenhausen site, the sports car maker also complies with Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) standards – a voluntary community environmental management and auditing instrument developed by the European Union. Porsche Zuffenhausen has been validated according to EMAS for more than 20 years, and has fulfilled the ISO 50001 standard since 2011. Since then, Porsche Leipzig GmbH, the Research and Development Centre in Weissach including its external locations, the central parts warehouse in Sachsenheim and Porsche Werkzeugbau GmbH have all been certified as compliant with this standard and with the ISO 14001 environmental management system.
In addition to the official certifications, Porsche also carries out internal reviews of compliance with environmental and energy legislation as part of its annual system and process audits. These audits are based on high standards and involve the hiring of external environment and energy auditors. The site results method records the impact that a site has on the environment: data and key figures are used to rate essential environmental aspects on a scale of high, medium and low relevance. On this basis, Porsche can determine all measures needed to ensure that potential negative impacts on the environment are reduced if not avoided altogether. The Environment and Energy steering committee carries out regular progress checks on the predefined goals and initiates appropriate steps. The steering committee works cross-departmentally.
Given the expansion of production, constant growth in employee numbers and comprehensive building work undertaken at the sites, Porsche’s energy consumption is now higher than in previous years. By switching to power drawn from renewable energy sources, however, the company has succeeded in reducing on-site CO2 emissions per vehicle produced.
In accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative Standards, information provided on the topic of “energy and emissions during production” in this report contributes to the reporting requirements of GRI 302: Energy and GRI 305: Emissions. These are measured using the direct and indirect energy consumption values as well as the direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions.
Resource consumption during production
Porsche strives to achieve a balanced environmental performance. Important aspects in this regard are the use of water as efficiently as possible through circulation systems and multiple reuse and the careful handling of contaminated production waste water. Avoiding waste, harnessing low-waste technologies and deploying sustainable disposal solutions are key elements of Porsche’s waste management concept. The company’s environmental protection resource regulation serves as an internal guideline and is also binding on suppliers.
In Logistics, too, sustainable planning and control were further advanced in 2019 as part of the green logistics strategy. The strategic approach is characterised by across-the-board optimisation. To minimise the effects on the environment and ensure that logistics processes are as sustainable as possible, further measures and potential improvements were identified, assessed and implemented in the reporting year.
Logistics is already using three natural gas trucks, one hybrid truck and two electric trucks as a result. A new small parts warehouse has also entered operation at the Leipzig site, featuring innovative shuttle technology that cuts its energy consumption by 50 per cent compared to conventional facilities. In 2019 further environmentally friendly measures in the area of vehicle transport were also introduced. The completed sports cars are transported away from the Zuffenhausen site in a newly developed long truck featuring a larger capacity as part of an innovative process that saves over 2,000 journeys per year.
In accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative Standards, information provided on the topic of “resource consumption during production” contributes to the reporting requirements of GRI 303: Water, GRI 305: Emissions and GRI 306: Effluents and Waste. The data is measured using the water consumption, the direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions and the amount of effluents and waste.
Conservation and biodiversity
Porsche is committed to helping preserve biodiversity. These efforts are focused on the fundamental goals of conservation and landscape maintenance – supporting nature and landscapes in populated and unpopulated areas so that biological diversity, effective and functioning ecosystems, and the diversity, character, beauty and recreational value of nature and landscapes are safeguarded in the long term.
Generally, environmental and energy management staff are always at the disposal of internal and external company stakeholders to answer questions or listen to suggestions on the topic of environment and energy. The goal is to foster open and transparent dialogue. One example of this approach is the central complaints management system within the environment and construction management structure. Porsche’s neighbours may contact central contact persons with any complaints or suggested improvements. All issues raised are dealt with individually. This system enables Porsche to react as quickly as possible and to incorporate suggestions into its long-term planning for the improvement of its sites.
In accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative Standards, information provided on the topic of “conservation and biodiversity” contributes to the reporting requirements of GRI 304: Biodiversity.