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German federal government and automotive industry create new purchasing incentives
Since May 1, 2016, consumers who opt for a low-emission electric car have been eligible to receive an environmental bonus of 4,000 euros. Buyers of plug-in hybrid vehicles can receive a premium of 3,000 euros. The decision was made by the German federal government in cooperation with German carmakers at the automotive summit that took place in Berlin in the middle of April. The cost of some 1.2 billion euros is being split by the government and carmakers. The purchase of new cars will be supported up to a net list price of 60,000 euros. Until now, BMW, Daimler, and Volkswagen vehicles are eligible for the premium.
The bonus is meant to serve as initial incentive to buy. In 2009, the German federal government launched a plan to get one million electric vehicles onto Germany’s streets by 2020. At present, however, there are only 55,000 cars with electric or hybrid drives on the country’s roads. “The measures introduced today are an important and necessary step toward achieving this ambitious goal,” said Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH. In addition to the buyer’s premium, the German government is making funds available to expand charging infrastructure. Some 15,000 additional charge stations are expected to be installed across Germany in the coming years.
The cost of vehicles will play a decisive role in the breakthrough of electric drive technologies. To reduce this cost, batteries must become more affordable. For this reason, Bosch is investing both its expertise and money: together with its Japanese partners Mitsubishi and GS Yuasa, the company is researching lithium-ion technology. In addition to this, Bosch acquired Seeo, an American company, in the fall of 2015. The start-up has the expertise required to significantly increase the energy density of lithium-ion batteries and the range of electric vehicles. Not only has Bosch set itself the goal of doubling the distance electric vehicles can travel on a single charge by 2020, it also aims to halve the cost of batteries.
More information about Bosch’s e-mobility activities can be found here.
Bosch is publishing its Sustainability Report online for the first time
2015 was the year of the global sustainability agreement: world leaders signed a new climate agreement at the world climate summit in Paris. In New York, the United Nations set 17 development goals with its Agenda 2030. In our latest Sustainability Report, which is being published online for the first time, we present what Bosch is doing to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the areas of environment, products, associates, and society. The report includes a conversation between Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH, and the climate researcher Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber. Among other things, the two discuss the SDGs.
Connectivity is also in focus in the 2015 Sustainability Report. Examples of connected products at Bosch include mobility technologies that help make driving safer: these systems are based on sensors for predictive driving. With their help, fuel consumption can be reduced, and drivers can detect and avoid hazardous situations. We have also applied our expertise in energy-efficient production to reduce our own carbon footprint. Measures include energy-saving initiatives at individual production sites and the use of renewable sources of energy. As a result of these efforts, Bosch has already reached its goal of reducing CO2 emissions relative to value added – five years ahead of schedule.
More information about Bosch sustainability targets and what we are doing to achieve them can be found here.
Robert Bosch Stiftung awards the 2016 junior professorship to Dr. Oliver Schenker
New developments at Robert Bosch Stiftung
Finite resources are the engine of global economic growth, and demand for raw materials continues to grow. Today, more than a billion people around the world still have no access to electricity. Against this backdrop, the international community recently acknowledged the need for a sustainable, low-carbon energy policy at the world climate conference in Paris. However, this acknowledgement is not enough: the right legal and economic framework conditions are also urgently necessary. As current developments show, both are insufficient: for instance, more than 2,000 coal-fired power plants are presently being planned around the world.
Which factors are working against sustainable energy policy, especially in emerging and developing countries? And how can these obstacles be overcome? These are topics that Dr. Oliver Schenker will focus on over the course of his tenure as the 2016 Robert Bosch Junior Professor. Starting in June, the environmental and resource economist will be heading a research project at the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
Schenker and his team will develop economic balance models that will analyze a number of different effect factors. “The effects of and interaction between political tools in the policy mix will be a central part of my analysis,” Shenker says. Among other things, the economist will analyze the energy transition in Germany – a development that has brought forth unpredictable changes for the major energy providers. The results will include a framework that will help provide orientation for fast-changing emerging and developing countries, all the while offering the flexibility and adaptability required to effectively respond to future changes.
Since 2008, Robert Bosch Stiftung has awarded the “Sustainable of natural resources” junior professorship. The aim is to contribute to solving urgent environmental problems. The professorship is funded over a period of five years with a budget of one million euros. Scientists from all disciplines and countries are invited to apply for the 2017 junior professorship.
More information on the 2016 junior professorship can be found here.
Sports stars are supporting a new Bosch educational initiative
At present, about 5.5 million young Europeans are unemployed. Especially in southern Europe, many young people are looking for jobs. In Greece and Spain, about half of 15- to 24-year-olds are affected by unemployment. In Italy, the figure is 40.5 percent. Experts see the theoretical focus of the educational system as one of the reasons behind these alarmingly high rates of joblessness.
Soccer star Daniele Massaro with students and teachers after a training session.
To increase the employment opportunities of young adults, Bosch Italy and the Randstad temp agency have initiated a special new program. With “Allenarsi per il Futuro” (“Training for the future”), the company offers students and graduates the opportunity to gain practical experience. The offer includes orientation events, internships, and job training that systematically prepare young people for the start of their working life.
The company has gotten the support of a number of prominent sports stars, among them the soccer player Daniele Massaro, the tennis star Mara Santangelo, the boxer Patrizio Oliva, and the basketball player Riccardo Pittis. Their message is that training, commitment, and focus are decisive success factors not only in sport, but also in preparing for working life. Over the course of the project, the stars and Bosch associates have visited more than 200 schools and universities to speak with pupils, apprentices, and students. Bosch Italy has set itself the aim of visiting another 300 schools with “Allenarsi per il Futuro” by the end of 2016. The plan is to reach 60,000 young people and offer 400 internship spots.
In addition to this, dual apprenticeship programs have been launched at Bosch locations in Bari and Milan. Apprentices from the Galileo Galilei Institute in Milan and the Cuccovillo Institute in Bari are now receiving practical training at Bosch. The company brings decades of experience in dual education to the table. In 2015, Bosch won the ”Active Education Award” for its “Allenarsi per il Futuro” program. The award is presented by the Italian ministry of education (MIUC) and Confindustria, Italy’s largest employers association.
More information on the training program can be found on Facebook (in Italian).
Bosch parking space system can reduce urban traffic by up to a third
Every day, drivers looking for a parking spot in Germany waste valuable time and money, in addition to facing the regular annoyance of the search itself. On average, we drive 4.5 kilometers while trying to find a place to park in cities. Not only are these kilometers aggravating, they are also bad for the environment.
With the aim of making the search for a parking spot significantly shorter in the future, Bosch has developed the “Connected Parking“ parking spot management system. The comprehensive solution makes the entire parking process easier: not only does the Bosch technology help drivers park their cars comfortably, intelligent connections also help guide the vehicle through urban infrastructure to ensure that drivers can find the closest possible parking spot. The driver’s app is connected to sensors via a cloud. These sensors continuously analyze the parking spot situation in real-time and provide drivers with up-to-the-minute information. The system supports drivers with everything from the search to parking maneuvers – regardless of whether they are on the street or in a parking garage, in the city or the countryside.
The parking lot sensor
The system also has a positive impact on the environment. By reducing the time and distance needed to find a parking space, it can reduce inner city traffic by up to 30 percent. City dwellers and road users also benefit from this. Bosch has set itself the aim of making mobility cleaner, more efficient, and more convenient.
More information on the “Connected Parking” system can be found here.