This Text will deal with any kind of sustainable projects, processes and development of the Volkswagen AG. Therefore we will take a closer look at the methods and the resources of the production process, as well as the product itself. First of all I would like briefly introduce the Volkswagen AG, though. The Volkswagen AG was found on the 28.05.1937, since that day VW belonged to the leading automobile companies. Today, VW is the biggest automobile producer in Europe and the second biggest of the world. Over time many new sub companies were found, like Porsche, Bugatti or Skoda is one.
When we talk about sustainable projects we will have to consider a project called the “Think-Blue-Program”. This project is a program that was introduced in 2008 and regulates the way how cars are produced, what materials and what resources are used and in how far those regulations can help to minimize the pollution and waste of material. The overall goal of this project is a total reduction of the pollution by 25 percent. This goal is aimed to archive in 2018. In order to archive a more efficient and sustainable use of materials VW concentrated on two main projects.
One of these projects opens up the possibility for owners of an old VW – car to bring their car back to VW and trade it for a fair price. The sustainable aspect of this option is following: The old car is used either as a direct source for car-parts, which than will be checked and/or repaired, or as a source for raw materials for the current automobile production. This project enables VW to safe money as well as to reduce the overall pollution since new car parts or materials do not have to be produced in the first place. VW officially stated that this project saves annually up to 350.000 tons of Steel and Metal, and up to 500.000 tons of CO² that is not polluting the environment.
The other project I found worth presenting is the overall improvement of the production and the conditions within the factories. This project is called “Think-Blue-Factory”. The basic idea that is tried to accomplish is the use of resources and especially energy in a regenerative sense. One step taken in this project is for example the use of water. VW is really anxious concerning the fresh-water use. For that purpose VW constructed huge tanks that are supposed to save the rain, in order to use it for production processes.
Furthermore is the increasing use of factory own springs a big factor in saving fresh – water. Since VW officially claimed to be the most sustainable automobile producer, it initiated projects not just for a more sustainable use of resources but also a program that concerns the use of regenerative energies. Therefore VW pays a lot of attention to use more and more and at some point only regenerative energies like wind, water or the sun. Even though this project does not sound too hard to accomplish it is a very long lasting process.
This is caused by a simple factor and that is: money. Using those green energies of course turns out to be good for the overall improvement of the environment, but when you take a look at this project from the economical, and especially financial point of view, you will soon realize how much more costs are caused by the use of those energies. So now that I talked about the aspects of production, and the appropriate use of energy and resources, it is time to talk about another big part of the “Blue-Thinking-Project”.
Probably not really well known are specific cars of VW that are produced sustainable and moreover are build to be used in a sustainable sense. Those cars are called “Blue-Motion” cars.
These Blue Motion cars aim to produce a minimal pollution only and to save fuel. Therefore VW concentrated on two major points concerning the construction of the car. First of all they archived an overall weight reduction with the use of special and especially light, but stable materials. Carbon is a classic example for such a material. The other major point focused on the engine.
Due to studies and research VW came up with many new technologies and new ways of constructing an engine efficient as well as very sustainable since newly constructed engines save up to 40 percent of the pollution compared to a regular engine. Now combined with the weight reduction and the efficient new engines, VW achieved their goal of developing a more or less sustainable car. Another project found by VW is a specific offer to all drivers. Since having a car that produces less ecological damage and driving in a way to also produce less ecological damage is a big difference, a new program was found.
This project is a special teaching of experts for drivers in order to show and teach ecological important driving behavior and therefore also to introduce a more sustainable use of fuel. So all in all VW can be considered a very future orientated company that pays special attention to sustainable projects and processes. VW recognized the importance of acting sustainable.
Considering the “Think-Blue-program”, and the steps that have already been taken, like the use of regenerative energy or the project “Think-Blue-Factory”, one can tell that the importance of acting sustainable really will be a big concern for the future development of the Volkswagen AG. „Bis 2018 wollen wir an der Spitze der Automobilindustrie stehen – ökonomisch und ökologisch.” Martin Winterkorn, Vorsitzender der Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft