Volvo Trucks is taking sustainability to the next level with its fully electric commercial trucks. The Swedish truck manufacturer announced that its heavy-duty EV trucks will now feature fossil-free steel.
The transportation sector leads fossil fuel consumption and is the second-largest contributor to toxic CO2 emissions globally.
Volvo Trucks is on a mission to change that. The Swedish truck manufacturer unveiled its first electric commercial truck, the Volvo FL Electric, in 2019 and has been blazing its own sustainable path ever since.
The FL Electric was followed up by the Volvo VNR Electric with a bigger battery and added range, which began rolling out in North America in 2020. In September, Volvo took it a step further, introducing three massive 44-ton electric trucks. With six commercial electric vehicles, Volvo now has the most extensive heavy-duty EV lineup.
The heavy-duty electric trucks are attracting top-tier partners looking to achieve their climate goals, such as Amazon, which ordered 20 Volvo FH Electric models with up to 44 tonnes of capacity and a range of up to 300 km (186 miles).
Volvo Trucks is not stopping here, however. The company is now using fossil-free steel to build some of its electric trucks.
Volvo uses fossil-free steel for its electric trucks
According to Jessica Sandstrom, senior vice president of product management at Volvo Trucks:
Our journey to net zero emissions includes both making our vehicles fossil free in operation and over time fully replacing the material in our trucks with fossil-free and recycled alternatives.
Volvo says it uses fossil-free steel made from Swedish steel manufacturer SSAB, which utilizes state-of-the-art technology such as fossil-free electricity and hydrogen.
Several companies will begin receiving fossil-free steel EV trucks, including Amazon and DFDS. The VP of transportation services for Amazon Europe commented on the innovation, stating:
At Amazon, we are on the way to make all of our operations net-zero carbon by 2040. We need partners like Volvo to make this transition happen.
The fossil-free steel is produced with hydrogen and is currently being used in the truck’s frame rails. Volvo says as the availability of this type of steel increases, it will utilize it for other parts of the vehicle.
Interestingly, up to 90% of Volvo Trucks can be recycled, while 30% of materials in new trucks come from recycled materials.
Volvo Trucks is taking a massive step forward for the transportation sector by introducing fossil-free steel and recycled materials in its electric models.
Although electric vehicles significantly reduce carbon emissions on their own, introducing practices like Volvo can accelerate the transition while further reducing emissions. As additional fossil-free steel and other materials become available like this, I would expect to see automakers also begin implementing the technology.
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