Automotive Sector

Relations of the automotive sector to biodiversity are multifaceted and expand along the value creation chain. Along the path of raw material extraction over production and use to waste management of automobiles there are a range of ecological impacts of high relevance to biodiversity conservation. Especially the exploitation of raw materials is often related to serious direct intrusions into ecosystems and habitats.  

Additionally, the demand of rare earths will rise by the ongoing spreading of electro mobility. A lot of the mining sites are located in countries of particular species richness and fragile ecosystems.

Use of automobiles adds by polluting emissions, while the necessary infrastructure itself already accounts for the fragmentation of ecosystems and habitats

Risks

The sector depends directly as well as indirectly on biological diversity, intact ecosystems and ecosystem services, such as:

  • Allocation of renewable resources, e.g. filling elements like coconut, optical pleasing wood for armatures, natural rubber for tires and leather for seats
  • Regulated services, e. g. water supply for production processes, sink funtions for car emissions
  • Supply of bioenergyplants to produce biofuels This should resolve in the consideration of ecological and social interests for the exploitation of raw materials, which can be stated in the "license to operate”.

Chances

The automobile sectors many with their contact points to biodiversity also provide a wide range of opportunities, such as:

  • Positive reputation by biodiversity conservation – projects on real estate (see Daimler case study) or projects of renaturation, reconnection of habitats and species protection (see Volkswagen study)
  • Environmental protection measurements can be allocated to an ecoaccount. The earned ecopoints can be used for compensation commitments in later construction projects in reverse or even be sold to other construction projects (see Daimler case study)
  • Securement of corporate production basis, e.g. by protection of water resources and efficient use of raw materials in general