German car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz announced last year their goal of achieving carbon neutrality by the year 2039. They also set aside $47 billion (or £37.416 billion) for their switch to electric vehicles between 2022 and 2030. The company’s pledge is to create only vehicles that consist of electrics beginning 2025.
Mercedes-Benz also announced their new goal of cutting off by 50% their CO2 or carbon dioxide emissions by decade’s end. This was revealed during the first digital Environment, Social and Governance Conference. According to Mercedes CEO Ola Källenius, the company’s latest action is a clear indication of the direction they are going.
Mercedes’ plan of action consists of the following:
- Using green energy for charging
- Battery technology improvement
- Turning the vehicle fleet electric
- Extensive use of renewable energy and recycled materials for production purposes
Using solar and wind power is also part of the German car manufacturer’s emissions-free roadmap. The alternative power sources will be used on their sites. Mercedes will also be talking to other parties, hoping to come up with an agreement. Källenius knows that the progress of their actions depends on several factors, including commitment and collaboration among companies, the society, and governments.
The company has a Mercedes me Charge network with approximately 300,000 public charging points all over Europe. It is an initiative to promote green charging and encourage consumers to consider using renewable sources.
Even the green steel supply chain has become a significant part of Mercedes-Benz’s path to an emissions-free future. In their effort to expand zero-CO2 and low-CO2 use in producing their models, the company took an equity stake in H2 Green Steel or H2GS, a Swedish startup dedicated to green steel. Mercedes intends to use green steel in several of their 2025 production models.
Additionally, the German carmaker has slowly transitioned to CO2-neutrality since earlier this year. Their plants now focus on neutrally producing carbon dioxide.
All these actions are indications that Mercedes-Benz has started to shift their focus to responsible manufacturing and renewable, sustainable energy, power, and production sources. These actions will allow Mercedes-Benz to transition faster and more efficiently into creating and using electric cars.
The Mercedes diesel emissions scandal
The major reason that Mercedes is now bent on creating an emissions-free environment is the 2015 Dieselgate scandal.
The diesel emissions scandal initially involved Volkswagen, another German carmaker. It was in September 2015 when VW officials were summoned by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and accused of installing defeat devices in their diesel vehicles sold across the United States.
VW denied the accusations at first but eventually admitted to their wrongdoing. As a result, they were fined and subjected to class-action lawsuits by affected customers. They also had to recall thousands of their diesel vehicles.
Approximately one year after Volkswagen was implicated in the Dieselgate scandal, the Mercedes emissions scandal broke. Like VW, the manufacturer and its parent company Daimler, were accused of installing defeat devices in their diesel vehicles in the US. Daimler and Mercedes-Benz continue to deny the allegations despite the scandal having now affected the entire Europe and the UK, and even after paying millions in fines and compensation claims and facing one class-action lawsuit after another.
Mercedes-Benz has also had to recall thousands upon thousands of their diesel vehicles to correct the mistake resulting from the installation of defeat devices.
What are defeat devices?
Defeat devices are installed in vehicles to manipulate emissions testing. When a car is in testing, a defeat device automatically detects the activity and adjusts emissions levels, making them lower than the legal limits recommended by the World Health Organization. In real-world road conditions however, the defeat device makes the vehicle revert to its default settings, allowing it to emit levels of toxic gases that are multiple times over the WHO and EU limits.
Emissions from diesel vehicles are known as nitrogen oxides or NOx, which is responsible for forming smog, acid rain, and ground-level ozone. This causes several health risks, such as asthma or aggravated asthma, difficulty in breathing, lung problems, and, in severe cases, increased risk of cancer, cardiovascular problems, and early death. The UK recorded its first air pollution-caused death in 2013, when nine-year-old Ella Kissi-Debrah died after being constantly exposed to toxic air.
What should affected Mercedes car owners do?
Since Mercedes-Benz has already started the shift to cleaner production alternatives, they should allow you and other affected car owners to file for diesel compensation. Once you’ve verified that your Mercedes-Benz is affected, start working on your claim.
In such cases, a common question would be, “How do I file my diesel claim?” You can do things on your own or work with a panel of emissions solicitors who know what to do and how to win, like the teams at ClaimExperts.co.uk. With their extensive knowledge and experience in filing diesel emission claims, you’re guaranteed to never go wrong. They will guide you every step of the way. Best of all, they offer a no-win-no-fee feature, so you don’t have to worry about losing more money. Visit their website today.