Volkswagen has set itself new targets for reducing the environmental impact of production.

By 2025, the automaker claims vehicles and components will be produced in a way which is 45% more environmentally compatible than in 2010, the reference year for the current Think Blue, Factory environmental programme.

“We reached our environmental target of producing our vehicles 25% more sustainable by 2018 before the date set,” said Production and Logistics board member, Thomas Ulbrich.

“We now intend to reduce environmental impact by a further 20% by 2025. We are on the way to the resource-optimised factory at all the locations of the brand.”

Measures to reduce emissions and use resources more efficiently have been implemented, with 16 existing paint shops optimised and the base load energy consumption of the plants during non-production times falling by 15% on average.

Eight international locations have taken 100% of their power requirements from renewable sources since the start of the programme. Thanks to lower consumption, the programme has already saved more than EUR130m (US$146m) in production during six years.

The approach adopted means that the plants which form part of Volkswagen’s global production network systematically exchange information on their respective success stories and adopt the most appropriate measures from each other.

In future, not only compressed air systems, cold networks and cooling towers but also ventilation and lighting systems are to be reviewed at all locations with a view to achieving further savings.

“To date, we have given equal weighting of 20% to each of our environmental indicators,” said Environmental Production head, Liendel Chang.

“This corresponded to 40% for the global climate protection factors CO2 and energy, and 60% for the local environmental protection factors of water consumption, waste production and solvent emissions. In future, the weighting will shift to 60% global and 40% local.”