Rolls-Royce 2050: net zero carbon in production operations

By Georgia Wilson
Rolls-Royce joins the UN Race to Zero campaign taking a leading role in pioneering a resilient and inclusive, net zero carbon future...

In joining the UN Business Ambition for 1.5oC campaign, Rolls-Royce has set its ambitions to become net zero carbon across its operations by 2030, with further ambitions to play a leading role in enabling the sector to reach net zero carbon by 2050 via the production of new products and technologies.

As part of its commitment, Rolls Royce has set its focus on advancing key production technologies including:

  • Leading a consortium that combines proven technology with advanced manufacturing to build small modular nuclear power stations for competitive, clean and low carbon power at scale
  • Designing parts that drive changes in the efficiency of engines, as well as working with the fuel industry to ramp up the availability of lower carbon alternative fuels
  • Partnering with YASA - a manufacturer of high-power, lightweight electric motors and controllers - and Electroflight - a start-up specialising in high performance electric powertrain - to accelerate the development of disruptive technologies and capability for low emission products in the aerospace industry
  • Continuing to invest in developing state of the art manufacturing and production environments to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 by using: 100% renewable energy; closed loop manufacturing techniques; and deploying cutting-edge microgrid capabilities

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought immediate and obvious pressures to our industry and to us as a company, but the long-term challenges our world faces have not gone away,” said Warren East, CEO, Rolls-Royce. “The world on the other side of this pandemic will need the power that we generate to fuel economic recovery. I absolutely believe the call for that power to be more sustainable and net zero will be stronger than ever. Answering that call is a big, complex challenge and few companies on the planet are better placed than Rolls-Royce to help. We will use our capabilities to play a leading role in enabling the vital sectors in which we operate to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. I believe this ambition will drive our competitiveness for the future.”

In addition to its technological commitments in manufacturing and production, Rolls-Royce has also committed to:

  • Continuing to deploy hybrid electric systems in the rail and marine industries as well as implementing these systems into aviation
  • Providing microgrid solutions for vital stability and back-up power
  • Aligning its business to the Paris Agreement goals
  • Harnessing its technological capabilities to play a leading role in enabling aviation, shipping, rail, and power generation to get to net zero carbon by 2050
  • Striving to accelerate, progress against carbon reduction targets and goals
  • Continuing its investment in research and development (R&D) for products and solutions
  • Producing a clear roadmap establishing a pathway to enable net zero carbon emissions by 2050

“With 2.6 billion people and over half of global GDP now covered by net zero goals, Rolls-Royce is positioning itself to meet huge growth in demand for net zero transport and power. As a company operating in some of the hardest to abate sectors, this is a big act of industrial technology leadership,” added Nigel Topping, UN High Level Climate Action Champion for COP26.

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