Polestar, the all-electric Volvo spinoff, is looking to borrow ideas from the fashion industry in its quest to develop a carbon neutral vehicle by the end of the decade.
As it stands now, the fashion industry and the transport industry account for a large share of global emissions, contributing to climate change, according to Fredrika Klarén, head of Sustainability at Polestar.
The potential for reduction is immense, and even greater if underpinned by collaboration, she added.
“The biggest obstacle to sustainable innovation is our own lack of imagination — we need to reimagine everything in order to make real change. This starts with collaboration within, and beyond, our industry,” Klaren said.
Soft material still critical to car design
Textiles and soft interior materials in particular remain a huge challenge on our quest to deliver on climate neutrality,” noted Klaren. “The fashion and automotive industries are two heavy emitters of carbon dioxide. Both industries share many complex challenges when it comes to sustainability, related to resource use, human rights and transparency. We are now in the ‘climate decade’ and working in silos just won’t cut it.”
Polestar is the main partner for 2022 Global Fashion Summit, the leading international forum for sustainability in fashion, which brings together members of the fashion industry, policy makers and stakeholders from a range of industries.
Polestar is the only automotive brand involved in the event, participating with the aim of finding new partners to join the Polestar 0 project — its ‘moonshot goal’ to create a truly climate neutral car by 2030 without relying on off-setting with carbon credits.
Innovation in textiles, an area Polestar believes the fashion industry is key, is where the EV maker is looking to make change. Polestar is now looking for potential partners within the textile industry, through panels and strategic networking at the summit.
“Bringing Polestar as principal partner to the Summit is the essence of what we aimed to achieve with our new and expanded cross industry-scope,” said Federica Marchionni, CEO, Global Fashion Agenda. “Polestar is spearheading sustainability in the car industry with its bold, near-time goals.
“Polestar’s approach, especially when it comes to favoring radical change rather than incremental improvements, is an inspiration for the fashion industry too. For those working with sustainable materials and textiles, Polestar’s search for collaboration will be a great opportunity and business case to explore and apply innovations in a new area.”
Polestar 0 Project
The Polestar 0 project is Polestar’s effort to create a climate-neutral car by 2030, which was announced in the company’s first annual review, published in April 2021. The program aims to cut carbon emissions by changing the way that cars are made, rather than using traditional processes and then planting trees to offset carbon dioxide.
The goal is to encompass collaboration across the entire development process and value chain, from suppliers to retailers. The project targets what Polestar can measure and control: zero carbon emissions in the production of the car, delivery to customer and end-of-life.
The use phase of an electric car can already today be close to climate-neutral if the car is charged with renewable energy.