Introducing Northvolt’s Sustainability Report 2021
16 June, 2022
Our first Sustainability Report outlines what we are doing, how we are doing it, and the challenges we face in our mission and work to enable the future of energy. It sheds light on a bold and ambitious strategy for making the world’s greenest battery, and the components required for a sustainable battery industry.
Our world has never been a static one. Rather, it is defined by constant change. In recent decades, however, the pace and nature of this change has brought about circumstances, ways of life and industrial activities that are simply not sustainable. Change of one kind must be countered by change of another sort.
As a company at the intersection of the transition to a low-carbon society and technological innovation, we work with an optimism which is guided by a belief in the solutions available to us. This optimism has been reinforced by the encouragement we draw from the outcomes of our work to date.
Having cemented our industrial position, secured our initial manufacturing capacity in Sweden and moved into commercial deliveries of batteries to customers, we are starting to see the impact of our mission. This is therefore an ideal time to release our first Sustainability Report, which provides clear insight on how we are working, alongside the nature and extent of our impacts.
In the Sustainability Report’s three sections – Our World, Our Impact and Our Structure – we give testament to the positive impact we are seeking to deliver, and how we intend to do so.
Enclosed within the report is our sustainability performance as a company and perspective on the environmental footprint of Northvolt batteries. We highlight how our batteries are enabling electrification and reducing emissions by land, by sea and by air. We outline how our activities and facilities throughout the battery value chain will function to achieve our ambitions. And through an outlook on the architecture of the company, we highlight how our people, governance structures and mechanisms for accountability are providing a basis for all that we do.
A glimpse into the report
Already today, we see the positive returns of our adoption of a strategy which prioritizes sustainability.
As detailed in the report, Life Cycle Assessment analyses of our battery cells provide clear evidence of this: cells produced at Northvolt Ett will carry a carbon footprint which is approximately one third that of a comparable industry reference cell.
What our LCA work also reveals is where we have significant work yet to be done. As just 3% of our cells’ total climate change impacts are attributable to production and 3% to transport and logistics, some 94% is associated with the materials we purchase. In pursuit of our target of 10kg CO2e/kWh by 2030, we know therefore that our continued work with suppliers, particularly of raw materials and chemicals, is critical.
Equally, the findings underscore the importance of scaling Revolt, our in-house program for recycling, through which we will significantly reduce our dependency on virgin raw materials and the environmental and social impacts associated with mining.
Northvolt was established amidst an awakening to the climate crisis and appeals for environmental accountability. Those circumstances, still present today, continue to shape the nature of our company. We know that the batteries we produce have a key role to play in the drive towards net-zero emissions. But in pursuit of scaling up global battery manufacturing capacity, we also know that our approach matters greatly.
While our approach has set us on the right path, we know that much work remains to be done. And in this endeavor we must remain vigilant to the reality that time is now our most precious resource.