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Sustainable development by 2030
The UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) entered into force at the beginning of 2016, and include targets such as eliminating poverty, ensuring universal high-quality education, and designing more sustainable cities. The UN has set the ambitious aim of reaching these targets by 2030, thus enabling people to live a life of dignity, promoting progress, and protecting the environment. Not only have the SDGs provided a valuable point of reference for policymakers, but also for the private sector, especially when it comes to protecting human rights, upholding labor standards, and protecting the environment. This is why Bosch has based the structure of the Sustainability Report 2016 on the SDGs, presenting the individual measures that the company has taken in the respective categories.
How does Bosch contribute to sustainable social change? The company’s “Invented for life” leitmotiv illustrates that Bosch not only aims to secure its long-term success with innovative products and services, it also intends to help protect the livelihoods of current and future generations. Bosch sees major opportunities in its core business – namely in the areas of connectivity, powertrain electrification, and energy efficiency. The company’s activities in these areas have determined which SDGs Bosch supports: health and safety (SDG 3), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11), and CO2 reduction measures (SDG 13). In addition to this, the Bosch commitment to social well-being has helped improve access to education (SDG 4) and promotes peace and justice (SDG 16).
In 2016, Bosch reached the following milestones:
• 30.6 percent fewer CO2 emissions (relative to value added) compared with 2007 (target: 35 percent 2020)
• 15.4 percent of management positions were filled with women (target by 2020: 20 percent)
• 614 environmental and occupational safety audits have been carried out at Bosch suppliers since 2010 (target: 1,000 by 2020)
More information on the ways in which Bosch is supporting the SDGs and what the company has achieved as a result can be found in our Sustainability Report 2016.
Fewer accidents by 2025 thanks to connected vehicles
According to the current “Connected Car Effect Study 2025”, which was conducted by Bosch in cooperation with the Prognos research institute, cars will likely be saving lives and preventing accidents by 2025. Among other things, the partners examined what connected vehicles will be able to do in the future thanks to technologies such as highly automated driving. They found that the effects of connectivity will have many positive, measurable effects.
For one thing, driving in 2025 will be safer and more comfortable. For instance, the number of accidents can be reduced with an emergency braking assistant or cloud-based wrong-way driver warning systems. Thanks to connected assistance systems, more than 260,000 accidents resulting in physical injury could be prevented each year in the countries examined – the United States, Germany, and China. This represents the total number of accidents in Berlin within a two-year period.
Moreover, cars are going to become even more efficient: highly automated vehicles consume less fuel, and technologies that help drivers find parking spots reduce traffic and the associated emissions. With community-based parking, for instance, software accesses community information to find the route to the closest free parking spot. Today, drivers in Germany drive an average of one kilometer per search – thus congesting the roads and causing emissions. With connected parking technologies, 480 million kilometers of driving distance could be saved, about the distance from Earth to Venus and back.
For many years, Bosch experts have been developing technologies that aim to increase vehicle efficiency and make road traffic safer. Today, cloud-based systems already provide drivers with information in real time, which allows them to respond to sudden hazards or avoid traffic jams, for instance.
More information on the car of tomorrow can be found here.
Bosch study shows what connected mobility will make possible
After a long drive on the highway, the last thing drivers want is a surprise traffic jam around the next bend. And when they finally arrive at their destination, they may have to drive around searching for a parking spot in vain. While this is an all too common situation today, technology may well be a game changer in just a few years time. Highly automated vehicles will warn drivers of oncoming traffic jams and decelerate accordingly, and navigation systems will take over the task of searching for a parking spot at the driver’s destination. Moreover, drivers will no longer need to carry out parking maneuvers themselves – their parking assistance systems will do it for them. While this may still seem like science fiction, connected cars are already equipped with highly sensitive sensors. Via the Internet, they are constantly linked to different clouds.
In cooperation with the Prognos consultancy, Bosch examined the potential impact of automation on road traffic in the Connected Car Effect Study 2025. The two companies analyzed different technologies for personal mobility and their effects by 2025 in Germany, the United States, and China. The model used for the study was based on international vehicle fleet development statistics, accident data, and current research.
Fewer accidents and CO2 savings
Among other things, the study found that driving is becoming safer and more comfortable while vehicles are becoming more efficient. This is the result of technologies that are already well established: “The secret heroes of the connected revolution are the assistance and comfort systems that we are already familiar with,” says Dr. Dirk Hoheisel, member of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH. With the help of safety systems such as the ESP anti-skidding system and cloud-based functions, in the future about 260,000 accidents could be prevented in the three countries and some 400.000 tons of CO2 could be saved. Moreover, it will one day be possible to integrate smart phones into vehicle infotainment systems and thus offer web-based parking solutions.
For many years, Bosch experts have been developing solutions that not only make road traffic safer, they also increase the efficiency of vehicles. For instance, cloud-based solutions already draw on real-time data to help drivers avoid traffic jams or react to sudden hazards. The most recent example of connected technology is the active gas pedal, which was launched in 2016: with a knocking signal and noticeable vibrations, it not only promotes an energy-efficient driving style, it also warns drivers of dangerous situations.
More information on the Bosch “Connected Car Effect 2025” study can be found here.
Bosch has stepped up its commitment to climate protection.
With the adoption of a new climate agreement, the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris has drawn to a close. Some 200 countries have signed the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to less than two degrees over pre-industrial times. Among other things, all countries have committed to setting national climate targets that will be assessed every five years.
Outside the 21st Climate Conference in Paris
According to John Danilovich, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce, the results of the climate conference are a major step forward. “This agreement will give business and investors the long-term certainty they need to scale up innovation and investment in climate solutions. The path to a low-carbon economy is now firmly set: business is ready to make that a reality,” Danilovich said.
ICC press conference during COP21 in Paris [VIDEO]
Bosch also welcomes the climate agreement, and sees the agreement among United Nations member states as an important step toward reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. Each year, the company spends ten percent of its sales on research and development. And energy efficiency plays an important role at Bosch: in recent years, the company’s products across business sectors have continuously become more energy-efficient and eco-friendly. Moreover, Bosch has committed to climate targets by setting itself the aim of reducing its CO2 emissions relative to value-added by 20 percent over 2007 levels. While Bosch originally set 2020 as its target date, the company has already achieved the 20 percent reduction in 2015 thanks to a range of internal measures. Not only do these include the greater use of renewable energies, they also involve specially trained CO2 coordinators, who are in charge of identifying potential for reducing emissions at all relevant Bosch locations around the world.
Bernhard Schwager of Bosch as he speaks to Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Research, at the German embassy in Paris
With regard to global climate targets, Bosch intends to build on its current energy-saving activities. The company has found that taking a sustainable approach to business also makes sound economic sense. Between 2007 and 2014, Bosch saved around 530 million euros as a result of energy-saving measures.
Updates on COP21 are available on the International Chamber of Commerce’s Twitter channel.
An innovative hydraulics system made of Bosch components reduces the fuel consumption of cargo ships
The world’s seaways play a decisive role in international trade: some 45,000 freighters are currently in use around the globe. In total, they carry 90 percent of the world’s traded goods. With efficient ship propulsion systems, global fuel consumption can be decreased and CO2 emissions reduced.
Against this backdrop, Japan’s Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding and Bosch Rexroth have developed a system that recuperates energy from the exhaust of diesel engines. Today, exhaust accounts for 25 percent - the largest share - of the energy lost in in the fuel combustion process. While thermal heat recovery systems have been available for quite some time, they are expensive and take up too much space in the engine room. For this reason, until now many shipping companies have avoided upgrading their freighter fleets.
In contrast, the newly developed turbo hydraulic system is not only very compact; it comprises Bosch standard components only. This makes retrofitting easier and keeps investment costs to a minimum. One of the system’s key components is a high-performance radial piston motor, which is directly connected to the large engine’s crankshaft. As a result, fuel savings of up to four percent can be achieved at full engine load. This represents several tons of fuel per day. The efficient system, which is also suitable for small and mid-sized engines, has already been exhaustively tested. The first retrofitted freighters are expected to hit the seas before the end of this year.
More information about fuel savings in shipping can be found here