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Toyota Motor North America: Sustainable Mobility

Toyota places sustainability at the heart of its vehicles and operations in its quest to provide the greatest amount of mobility to the greatest number of people.

As climate concerns grow, more needs to be done by those in the transportation sector to protect both the planet and the industry through sustainable solutions. This is the ethos of transport titan, Toyota, who is looking to do it’s part in tackling the carbon footprint of an industry that’s responsible for almost a third of emissions in the United States.

“The Earth is what we have in common,” explained Kevin Butt, Senior Director, Environmental Sustainability, Toyota Motor North America. “We have to work harder, innovate and develop more than ever before to revive the world in which we live.”

Doing its part to save the planet isn’t a fanciful or lofty goal for the innovators at Toyota, it’s a commitment. Toyota understands the significant weight of responsibility on the transportation sector; because without it, all industries are subsequently affected. So transportation must evolve and so do the companies behind it. 

Optimizing vehicles through the adoption of renewable energy alternatives to fossil fuels is key to reducing carbon footprint throughout the sector. Electrifying certain systems within vehicles, particularly long haul vehicles, can have an enormous impact on CO2 emissions. Before work can be done to widely distribute these machines however, the team first faces the challenge of explaining to the world that a solution is out there.

“First and foremost, we need to educate consumers on the existence of new technology,” said Jackie Birdsall, Senior Engineer, Toyota Motor North America. “It opens up  doors of opportunity to all these other different platforms where we can replace diesel or gasoline engines with fuel cell electric technology for example.”

When people think of electric cars, they think of long charging times and plugging their vehicles into an outlet. Using designated refill points, cars with hydrogen- powered fuel cells take about 3-5 minutes to top up before being able to drive for up to 400 miles. The Toyota team has announced an increase in production by 1,000% as they set themselves up to focus more on fuel cells as a viable and sustainable reality for the transport sector.

“It’s not something that just Toyota should do, it’s something that society needs to embrace,” continued Butt. “We need to work with governments, we need to work with independent suppliers, we need to work with anybody that we can to begin widespread implementation of renewable energy.”

The team are well on target to meet their 2025 sustainability goals, with over a half of Toyota’s line-up already having an electrified option. Toyota has been spearheading campaigns starting with its  hybrid technology far sooner than its competitors, and that industry leadership has not dissipated as they set their sights on the hydrogen cell market and beyond. For many, ever since the turn of the millennium with the introduction of the Prius, Toyota has been synonymous with sustainability and the word ‘hybrid’. Now, the car brand will be recognized for the fuel cell.



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