Transportation is the largest source of climate-disrupting pollution in the US. To tackle its massive carbon footprint, we must eliminate all gas-guzzling cars and trucks by fully shifting to battery-electric vehicles.
Toyota joined the group of automakers that sided with the Trump administration in its attempt to reverse Obama-era Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. Over the past several years, it also tried to undermine emissions standards in the US, Australia and the EU.
Toyota is at odds with the global community. In January 2021, CEO Akio Toyoda criticized Japan’s Prime Minister Suga’s green energy plan¹.
He questioned a rapid transition to electric vehicles, even as other nations commit to an all-electric future.
¹Source: Financial Times, 2021
Toyota is set to pay² the largest civil penalty ever levied³ in US history for breaching federal emission-reporting requirements.
Investors are concerned about Toyota’s position.
Five investors, including Norway’s Storebrand Asset Management and the Church of England Pensions Board, with total combined assets of half a trillion dollars, criticized Mr. Toyoda for questioning Japan’s electrification plans.
The battery-electric vehicle transition is essential to stop climate change.
Road vehicles are responsible for three-quarters of transportation emissions. But Toyota’s projected product mix of hydrogen and hybrid vehicles is too little, too late. Its top models, the Prius and Mirai, do not even significantly reduce emissions, compared to conventional vehicles.