Albert Straus Featured as Part of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business

Congratulations to Albert Straus, the CEO and Founder of our partner Straus Dairy, for being featured as one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business in 2020! Albert Straus has been a force for sustainability by leading his family dairy farm to become the first 100% certified organic, zero-waste, non-GMO creamery in North America.

Using innovative methods and creativity, Straus Family Creamery uses bio “digesters” to convert methane produced from manure into biogas, which is then used to fuel an on-farm generator. As part of this initiative, Straus entered into a first-of-its-kind agreement with the BMW Group to supply cow-to-car renewable electricity to BMW vehicles in California. The program allows BMW to qualify for carbon credits and pays farmers up to ten times more than what they’d earn through a regular power-purchase agreement with public utility companies.  

Read the full Fast Company article  here


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BMW CEO Oliver Zipse Announces New Sustainability Strategy

The BMW Group is making sustainability and resource efficiency central to the company’s strategic direction. Recently, Chairman of the Board of Management Oliver Zipse announced the initial details of this strategic direction in Munich and presented the new targets the company has set for the phase up to 2030.

Building on its decades-long strong foundation, the BMW Group is setting the standards in terms of sustainability through constant innovation. Some of the key new goals outlined include expanding BMW’s fleet of electrified vehicles to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% per vehicle per kilometer driven, reducing 80% of CO2 emissions from plants and sites, and utilizing science-based targets to form a basis for new goals.

In addition to this, Zipse stated that BMW will report its progress against the targets every year which will be used to determine the Board of Management and executive management compensation. Moving forward, the BMW Group will continue to invest in these innovative methods to further reduce CO2 emissions and increase resource efficiency.

Learn more about BMW’s commitments by reading the full press release below.


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BMW Highlights ChargeForward Partners

PG&E

The ChargeForward program is an innovative system that allows drivers to access renewable energy. This pioneering program was made possible through BMW’s unique partnership with PG&E. By working with energy providers in this first-of-its-kind partnership, BMW and PG&E demonstrated how renewable data from utilities can be shared with automakers to create programs for drivers that allow their vehicles to charge with more renewable energy. The partnership helps align renewable electricity consumption with energy generation, with hopes in the future for further grid optimization. 


UC Berkeley Transportation Sustainability Research Center

BMW partnered with UC Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center, which specializes in sustainable transportation, to evaluate and report results from the most recent phase of the pilot. As the lead research partner, UC Berkeley created a model and found that programs like ChargeForward can reduce greenhouse gas emissions of EVs by an additional 32 percent annually; and can increase the additional kWh of renewable electricity. The benefits of smart charging can create grid savings of about $325 per vehicle in California. 

Stay tuned to learn more about the ChargeForward program. 


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What Makes ChargeForward Unique?

The future of electric vehicles depends upon increasing consumer access to reliable, clean energy resources. ChargeForward serves as one of the most innovative smart charging programs. With over 400 BMW drivers around the San Francisco Bay Area participating in Phase 2 of the program. The program integrates drivers, automakers, and grid operators to balance supply and demand on the grid while providing renewable energy benefits.  As the adoption of electric vehicles grows, innovations like ChargeForward will further accelerate the shift from fossil fuels toward a more sustainable driving future. 

Here’s what makes ChargeForward unique: 

Innovative Technology 

ChargeForward uses vehicle telematics to transform electric vehicle charging to access more sustainable energy sources. BMW’s investment in this pioneering system has allowed automakers, drivers, and utility companies to maximize the use of green energy by electrified vehicles. 

This is how the system works: when a driver plugs in their vehicle, instead of immediately charging, the vehicle sends data on its current state of charge and projected unplug time to BMW. BMW simultaneously receives data from the utility about energy prices and current grid and renewable energy conditions for the vehicle’s specific location.

Next, the system considers the vehicle’s charging costs, and the driver provides input to the optimization based on their preference for the lowest charging cost or highest renewable energy use. Using these inputs, BMW is able to calculate the optimal charge windows for each vehicle and relay the charging signals to the vehicle through its vehicle telematics system. 

Daylight Charging Hours

Smart charging technology helps integrate renewable energy into the grid by allowing EVs to charge when there is high renewable energy generation, or when electricity is inexpensive. Smart charging during the day aligns with peak solar energy generation and helps utilities incorporate more renewables into the energy supply.

BMW’s ChargeForward program reduces use of fossil fuels in the charging process, with no impact on the drivers’ mobility needs. Drivers that charge at home at night can shift away from peak hours to low-cost overnight times, while still having a full battery in time for the morning commute. This opportunity for grid benefits is even greater for commuters who can plug in at work. 

Unique Partnerships

Through ChargeForward, BMW is pioneering partnerships between automakers and utility companies. Through its direct relationships with drivers through the program app and partnerships with local utility companies, BMW is paving the way for smart charging. 

Traditionally, grid operators maintain the balance of energy sources by increasing or decreasing generation in response to daily, hourly, and minute-to-minute changes in customers’ electricity consumption. However, with smart charging programs like ChargeForward, utility companies and automakers can better overcome challenges posed by uneven renewable energy integration and provide low-cost green energy solutions to drivers. 

In the future, smart charging will be critical to supporting renewable energy generation and integration—enabling EVs to minimize their carbon footprint, thereby mitigating climate change and reducing pollution. As part of its commitment to sustainable mobility, BMW is proud to bring bold innovations and new solutions like ChargeForward to life. 

Check out the full ChargeForward Report below.


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Did You Know: BMW’s ChargeForward Program

Did you know that you can reduce the carbon footprint of your electric vehicle by around 30 percent?  The US-based ChargeForward program, led by BMW, has found that a typical EV using smart charging will use an additional 1200 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy per year, equal to a three-month supply of electricity. Programs like ChargeForward also help to increase the capacity of renewable energy on the electricity grid and enabling greater renewable usage. What’s more, these significant carbon savings won’t impact your driving schedule, as they are generated entirely digitally and remotely.  

Learn more about the benefits of ChargeForward: Here


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Adam Langton Discusses BMW’s ChargeForward Program

As the world continues to shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy, the BMW Group is taking the lead by investing in the future of mobility through programs like ChargeForward.  The ChargeForward program is helping drivers cut their carbon emissions by switching from gasoline to electricity while also accelerating the adoption of renewable energy. We recently spoke with Adam Langton, Energy Services Manager, and ChargeForward Program Lead, at the BMW Group to learn more about this innovative technology. 

Check out his full interview below!


Q: Tell us about your background, your role at BMW, and your overall responsibilities?  

A: Currently, I develop and commercialize energy and data products related to BMW’s electric vehicles. My main role is to lead the development and implementation of the ChargeForward project, but I also develop other energy and data products that both generate revenue and help BMW achieve sustainability outcomes. I have been with BMW since 2015, and I am based at BMW’s Mountain View Technology office in Mountain View, California.

Q: In your own words, how would you describe the ChargeForward Program? What do you feel is the most innovative aspect of the program?  

A: ChargeForward has two key innovative features: the use of telematics to manage charging directly through the vehicle and the use of utility renewable energy data to optimize vehicle charging.  

Telematics: BMW is the first OEM to use the vehicle telematics system to communicate charging messages directly to the vehicle. This method means that we can smart charge the vehicle wherever it charges – at home, at work, or on the go. We use the BMW ConnectedDrive communication system in the vehicle, so there is no need to modify the vehicle or install new hardware at your home/work. As all BMW electric vehicles can access the ConnectedDrive network, any BMW electric vehicle can participate, making it easy to share this technology throughout California and beyond. 

Utility renewable energy data: The ChargeForward pilot was the first time that an automaker partnered with a utility to share renewable energy data and use this as a basis for vehicle charging optimizations. Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), the utility for the San Francisco Bay Area and most of Northern California, provided BMW with an hourly forecast of renewable energy generation. BMW used this forecast to time the charging to the utilities’ expected renewable generation. The use of this forecast meant that BMW could adjust the timing of vehicle charging specifically to the renewable energy conditions unique to each hour of the day in Northern California. When scaled, this functionality can make it possible for utilities to add more renewable energy to the grid in the long-term, as it gives them greater confidence that demand for that electricity to be available despite the variability in weather conditions. 

Q: As the project manager of ChargeForward, what led the inspiration behind pioneering the program at BMW?  

A: The inspiration behind the project was to see how we could expand the BMW sustainability benefits beyond the vehicle itself, to include the way it is used. The i-Brand was built from the ground up with sustainability as a core design principle. This is reflected in the sustainable materials used in the vehicle and the efficient manufacturing process to reduce energy and water consumption used to manufacturing our electric vehicles. ChargeForward takes this sustainability concept and empowers drivers to take simple actions to consume more renewable energy and reduce their carbon footprint.  

ChargeForward joins together two of the key technologies in the fight against climate change – electric vehicles and renewable energy – and helps make both of these tools more effective. Creating a ‘win-win’ opportunity for the automotive and the electricity sector is needed to help both sectors manage the significant transformational challenges required to meet the challenge of climate change. 

Q: In terms of partnerships, can you tell us more about how your collaboration with both UC Berkeley and PG&E helped play a role in the development of the program? What kind of partners could you envision contributing in the future?

A: UC Berkeley served as the research partner for the ChargeForward project. Specifically, we worked with the Berkeley Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC). The TSRC was an ideal fit for us because they are focused on understanding how sustainability outcomes can better be achieved in the transportation sector. The TSRC provided a team of researchers that helped analyze our results and evaluate the impact of each of the studies included within the larger project. TSRC used the data we collected in the project to develop a model which served as a basis for understanding how charging behavior and renewable energy outcomes could be improved under different future circumstances. For example, TSRC modeled a scenario where all drivers charged their vehicles at work during the day, which helped us understand the potential to absorb solar energy during times when it is plentiful on the grid. 

The partnership with PG&E provided us with expertise in how to design studies and tests that would be relevant to the grid. The most important aspect of this partnership was PG&E’s willingness to be a pioneer in sharing renewable energy data with us to use in optimizing charging. This data helped us measure our use of renewable energy and also served as a new communication tool with customers – for the first time, EV drivers could measure the renewable energy content of their charging. 

In the future, we envision partnering with more utilities so that we can expand ChargeForward to other parts of the US. 

Q: How does smart charging reduce carbon emissions and promote the use of renewable energy?  

A: Smart charging reduces carbon emissions and promotes the use of renewable energy by shifting the time of charging to align with the best opportunities to charge on the grid. Unlike traditional fossil fuel energy, renewable energy cannot be controlled. Solar energy is available during the day when the skies are clear and wind energy is available during windy times of day. The conditions that support renewable energy can change every hour, making it hard to predict the best times to charge your vehicle. When our drivers use smart charging, they are giving us the control of their charging so that we can start and stop charging to align with the dynamic conditions on the grid. Our drivers provide their departure time and then allow us to manage the charging for them, so they can maximize renewable energy without having to think about it. Our drivers can ‘opt out’ of smart charging if their plans change and they need to start charging immediately to get a full battery. At any time during smart charging, our drivers can click a button in the app which will direct the vehicle to fill up the battery as quickly as possible. 

Q: As we look towards the future, what kind of advancements do you expect with smart charging technology? Which potential solutions will these innovations bring to current urban mobility challenges?  

A: In the future, we expect that smart charging will grow in value as vehicle battery sizes get larger and vehicle-to-grid technology matures. Larger battery sizes will mean that drivers will have even more flexibility in when they charge their vehicles. With a larger battery size, drivers will be less dependent on charging every day to meet their range needs, but instead can optimize their charging over the course of multiple days – providing more opportunities to capture renewable energy. A sophisticated system to coordinate charging between vehicles and renewable energy will give utilities greater flexibility to add renewables to the grid without having to fear the impacts of grid imbalances. 

‘Vehicle-to-grid’ functionality also has the potential to greatly expand the benefits of smart charging. While smart charging allows charging to be shifted to different times of day, ‘vehicle-to-grid’ or V2G allows the battery to discharge to the grid, allowing the vehicle to absorb excess renewable energy and discharge that energy during times when demand for electricity is high. For urban dwellers, this kind of functionality not only helps to support renewables on the grid but could also serve as a backup power source during outages or during emergencies. 


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BMW Releases ChargeForward Report

In the US and other parts of the world, electricity grids are transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable resources. As an increasing number of states and local governments are setting ambitious clean energy targets aimed at reducing carbon emissions, utility companies are seeking technological solutions to integrate renewable energy on the grid. 

The BMW Group is leading the charge of accessing and storing renewables on the grid through its innovative ChargeForward program. The pilot program is a collaboration between California-based utility company, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), and UC Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center. 

The aim: to use as much solar energy as possible while contributing to the overall stability of the electricity grid. This is made possible through the ChargeForward application that allows participants to input when they’ll use their vehicle. While the vehicle is parked, and at a charging station, this information allows the BMW charging control system to regulate the charging process; enabling the vehicle to charge during non-peak hours and when GHG emissions are the lowest.  

Recently, the ChargeForward program finished the second phase of testing and released its report. The report highlighted many different findings that can help drive clean energy forward in the transportation sector, including: 

  • Smart-charging EVs have the ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an additional 32% on average in Northern California studies. 
  • Smart charging can enable EVs to accept an additional 1,200 kWh of renewable energy per vehicle per year. This is the equivalent of 3,500 to 5,000 miles of additional zero carbon travel.
  • Telematics data from automakers are a critical enabler of smart charging programs as it provides a holistic view of a driver’s mobility needs and helps facilitate daily charging during non-peak hours. 
  • ChargeForward vehicles can create an average of $325 in estimated grid savings annually per vehicle in California.

 “Electric vehicles can make a significant contribution here, not only as a flexible resource to help balance the grid, but also as a tool to enable the grid to support more renewable energy in the long term,” says Adam Langton, who manages the project for the BMW Group. 

As green energy initiatives move forward, flexible programs like ChargeForward will become more relevant to consumers and utility companies.

Learn more about the ChargeForward program here and follow us on Twitter for more updates on programs like these. 


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BMW Partners with World Central Kitchen to Deliver Meals During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted countless lives and communities from coast to coast. But, even through these challenging times, World Central Kitchen is on a mission to safely distribute fresh meals to communities in need across America. 

In order to help feed hard-hit communities, World Central Kitchen and the Bloomberg Hospital Initiative are distributing much-needed meals and supplies to frontline medical staff, with help from donated vehicles from BMW North America.

Through this partnership, World Central Kitchen is able to feed over 30,000 frontline medical staff every day at 16 public hospitals throughout New York City, while also enabling small businesses to re-activate operations.

We all have a role to play in supporting frontline heroes, small businesses, and local communities. BMW is proud to provide our vehicles to support World Central Kitchen. Let’s move forward together.


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MINI USA Donates Vehicles to Brotherhood Crusade for COVID-19 Community Outreach

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed and exacerbated pre-existing inequalities across the country for vulnerable individuals, families, and communities ranging from food insecurity to wealth inequality, and the digital divide.  

In response to this need, MINI USA, a division of BMW of North America, granted two loaner vehicles to the Brotherhood Crusade in support of ongoing COVID-19 community relief efforts. The donated vehicles will allow staff members to distribute much needed food, technology, and monetary support to vulnerable community members across South Los Angeles. 

As an organization with a 52-year history of supporting the needs of the Los Angeles community, the Brotherhood Crusade has been hard at work from the beginning of the pandemic. The organization established the COVID-19 Community Rapid Response Fund to support students and families in need of education, technology, housing, food and other items needed during this crisis. These services are offered to community members who are facing hardships from the crisis.  

To date, the organization has provided 205 Chrome tablets, 176 members with monetary support to purchase food and food vouchers and $50,000 in monetary support to support families with housing and other essential items during the pandemic. 

“Community is a big part of the MINI brand ethos, whether gathering for a drive with like-minded MINI fans, or engaging in the communities where we work and live to make them a better place.” said Linda White, Manager of Government and External Affairs for BMW of North America, LLC. “That’s why we’re pleased to support the Brotherhood Crusade in its mission to improve quality of life in underserved communities of Los Angeles by donating the use of these MINIs.” 

Charisse Bremond Weaver, Brotherhood Crusade President and CEO said, “We are thrilled to partner with BMW for granting the two MINI loaner cars. This thoughtful gesture will reinforce Brotherhood Crusade staff to transport and deliver much needed supplies to the neediest, most at-risk members of our community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The vehicles will be utilized to deliver CHROME tablets, food and other essential items that will provide major relief for the at-risk communities we serve.”

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global emergency that is unprecedented in modern history. But through these challenging and difficult times, the Brotherhood Crusade continues to bring life changing programs and resources to families and individuals in need. 

Learn more about Brotherhood Crusade and how you can make a donation to this cause here


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Plug-in Hybrids Lead Sustainability

Hybrid vehicles are leading the charge to sustainability. Currently, this consists of Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and plug-in hybrids (PHEVs). In HEVs, the battery is charged by the engine power and brake energy while in PHEVS, it’s charged by plugging vehicles in at a designated charging point, allowing the PHEV to cover long distances in electric mode.  

This charge allows PHEVs to offer the best of both worlds in both combustion power and all-electric for drivers who need variability in daily use. However, for vehicles to work at the best possible advantage to utilize the full environmental benefits, it must be used correctly. Meaning maintaining regular charging will help lower emissions, which is particularly useful as public charging infrastructure develops.  

The BMW Group aims to help its customers become as sustainable as possible by helping them maximize their PHEVs. BMW specially developed the BMW eDrive Zones program which aims to help drivers use their vehicles to lower carbon emissions by using electricity.  When the eDrive Zone is activated, it allows the vehicle to know if it is entering an eco-zone and automatically switches to zero emissions fully electric mode. Additionally, the BMW eDrive Zone also recommends charging points on routes and utilizes BMW points to reward drivers for using electric mode. These points can later be redeemed for prizes.  

Looking toward the future, the program will include convenient billing options while generating lower carbon emissions. As we continue towards the path forward, these innovative concepts and programs will be integral to ensuring sustainable driving solutions.  

Learn more about the BMW eDrive Zones here


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BMW Releases Safety Assessment Report of Autonomous Vehicle Testing

The BMW Group is committed to providing a thrilling driving experience while simultaneously ensuring safety for all. In collaboration with its partners, BMW is taking the next step in the future mobility by creating a scalable technology platform for a fully automated driving experience. Beginning in 2021, the BMW iNEXT will feature the BMW Group’s first secure Level 3 function for motorways and allowing drivers the option to use stable, safe, and fully-automated driving features. 

These innovative technologies are more important now than ever before. Automated vehicles present the potential to shape the future of mobility and increase safety and efficiency. BMW is committed to ensuring safety. Since the launch of the BMW Vision iNEXT concept in 2018, the BMW Group has pioneered the development of conditional driving automation with safety in mind. 

This Safety Assessment Report outlines our comprehensive approach to safety in automated driving, guided by the rules of the road set by lawmakers. By ensuring safety for all road users, we are plotting the course for the future of automated mobility.

Read the full report here


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BMW Reaffirms Commitment to Drop CO2 Emissions

As a major automaker dedicated to sustainability, BMW set stricter emissions targets, with the goal of lowering CO2 emissions by 20 percent. This ambitious goal to protect the environment includes plans to continue the rollout hydrogen fuel-cell and battery-electric models while also investing in fuel cell research. 

Recently, BMW CEO Oliver Zipse re-affirmed this commitment, “We remain firmly committed to the CO2 targets agreed within the European Union and to the introduction of the Euro 6d emissions standard. We simply cannot afford to rest on our laurels when it comes to protecting the environment.” 

A third of the reduction will come through improvements to BMW’s drivetrain systems while the remainder of the plan would be through increasing the number of electrified vehicles produced. By 2025, BMW plans to invest $32 billion in research and development. By the end of 2021, the group will be able to offer customers a choice of five all-electric series vehicles. 

Read more about BMW’s commitment here.


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Celebrating Earth Day 2020

As a pioneer in climate protection, the BMW Group continues to pursue its ambitious goals to lower CO2 emissions throughout its value chain in order to make an impact. The plans primarily focus on renewable energy and innovative charging concepts that combine the right products with the right manufacturing which reduce the overall carbon footprint.

While the BMW Group focuses on cutting emissions and energy consumption, it doesn’t just stop there. The most ambitious goal includes the transition to clean energy worldwide. From the end of 2020 the company will purchase only CO2-free energy to power plants, office buildings, dealerships, and research centers.

Product, especially electrification, is another essential component of the BMW’s focus. The ChargeForward program brings together two key tools in the fight against climate change: vehicle electrification and renewable energy. In turn, both of these components encourage consumers worldwide in the transition to EV vehicles and clean energy.

By focusing on the entirety of the value chain to reduce global CO2 emissions, the BMW Group is making an impact in the fight against climate change. As we look towards the future, the path forward will include more changes in both product and manufacturing to promote green, clean energy.  

Read the full article: https://bit.ly/2KmW5Lo


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BMW Electromobility Partnerships: Veloz

To achieve our climate goals, the BMW Group is playing a leading in producing and promoting electromobility options. Electromobility refers to electric powered mobility options this includes cars, e-bikes, electric motorbikes, and e-buses. At BMW, we have been working to make electromobility more viable within our product range. As electromobility options become more common, we are continuously challenging ourselves to do more. In fact, in 2019 BMW sold over 504,000 electric vehicles worldwide, setting ourselves apart as more than an automaker but a driver of change.  

Our path towards electromobility for all is centered upon the goals and initiatives we’ve developed through public-private partnerships. For example, we’re working to voluntarily align our fleet and apply uniform standards to help the US State of California to meet its goal to reduce emissions by 3.7% per year between 2022 to 2026. 

Our partners such as Veloz are also integral to our electromobility awareness and initiatives. Veloz is a nonprofit organization made up of a high powered, and diverse board and members from key sector companies, agencies, and nonprofits. Through their work, Veloz is accelerating the shift to electric cars through public-private collaboration, engagement, and policy education innovation. One key initiative is the Electric for All campaign that is geared towards drivers in California to steer them away from fossil fuels by educating them on the numerous benefits of electric cars. By electrifying the California market, Veloz is changing the world’s auto market.  

As we look towards the future of sustainable individual mobility, the BMW group strongly believes in the importance of public-private partnerships. It’s clear that as companies continue to transition to electromobility, innovative approaches and diverse partnerships will be essential for driving progress. 


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The Road to Sustainable Solutions

At the BMW Group, we have a consistent approach throughout the company: deliver on our promises. For us, sustainability isn’t just a trend; it’s a call to action to act beyond the present and towards the future. We have dedicated ourselves to making a positive impact on environmental and climate protection. In 2012, BMW created a set of sustainability goals running through 2020 focusing on three distinct areas: products and services; production and value creation; employees and society. So far, we’ve already fulfilled or are in the final stretch of achieving almost all of them.  

Sustainability is an integral part of the Group’s corporate strategy and business model, efforts that are recognized globally. In 2019, the BMW Group ranked among the top companies by renowned sustainability ratings as well as the only German carmaker to be listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) in the “World” and “Europe” categories. We are convinced that the success of any enterprise comes from your actions. Global challenges, such as climate change, motivate us to develop innovative products that provide forward-looking solutions.   

As drivers of innovation, we are committed to taking a leading role among automakers. The BMW Group is avidly working to increase urban mobility through stakeholder engagement with cities, support for electromobility, emissions limits, and continued developments of regulatory frameworks and products. In 2019 alone, BMW delivered over 146,000 electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids to customers worldwide. That means we now have more than half a million electrified vehicles on the roads across the globe.   

Furthermore, the Group is continuously incorporating new standards from the regulatory code and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals into our overall objectives. The SDGs aim to ensure that economic progress is both environmentally friendly and socially equitable. We wholeheartedly believe that companies, governments, and other organizations each have a role to play in achieving the SDGs and are committed to supporting these shared endeavors.  

Looking forward, the BMW Group plans to continue to expand our efforts globally. 2020 serves as a transformational year, as it marks not only the endpoint of our current sustainability goals but also gives us the freedom to implement even more ambitious strategies.    

“Now, we are going even further: we have set ourselves ambitious targets to successfully tackle a variety of new challenges. For this very reason, we have decided to fully incorporate our sustainability strategy into the BMW corporate strategy. This will fully ensure that the company’s thinking and actions are aligned in a sustainable manner. For me, this is how environmental and climate protection can achieve a real impact – across the company and within society.” – Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management.   

Read our full report: https://bit.ly/2JS06qX


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Meet the 2020 Women of BMW

Here’s to the women who are empowering, inspiring, and leading others!


As Women’s History Month draws to a close, we’re taking another moment to recognize each of the #WomenofBMW chosen by their colleagues! We thank them for sharing their inspirational stories and thoughtful reflections on being women leaders in the automotive industry. Now more than ever, we need to celebrate those making exceptional positive impacts on their workplaces and communities. Thank you to the Women of BMW for all that you do!



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Building a Better Los Angeles: 2020 Mobility Lab

How can public space be used better in a metropolis like Los Angeles? What incentives should be created to further increase the adoption of electric vehicles in communities in California? And how can we further improve and ease mobility by better coordinating public transportation services and the availability of on-demand mobility? City administrations, researchers, companies and citizens cannot answer questions like these on their own. They must advise and act together so that urban decision-makers can set the right course in good time.

This past January, the BMW Group Mobility Lab in Los Angeles, California brought together approximately one-hundred scientists, visionaries and decision-makers to discuss how to make the ‘city of angels’ more agile, sustainable and livable, as well as, exchange ideas in an all-day “thinking and discussion laboratory” about the future urban mobility. 

“Until now, traffic routes have mostly been designed for cars, but they should above all be available to people,” explains Lisa Errion Saums, Vice President of Government and External Affairs for the Americas Region at the BMW Group. “Mobility and quality of life in urban areas must not be a contradiction in terms. We want to find solutions for this,” said Saums at the beginning of the event. She emphasized: “The BMW Group is committed to sustainability and wants to play a leading role in this.” 

The Mobility Lab featured four workshops that dealt with different approaches to public transportation, electromobility, the scarce commodity of urban space and urban autonomous driving, and discussed, to what extent, the gap between private vehicle traffic and local public transportation can be closed by car-sharing approaches or (app-driven) shared rides. 

Other topics included: how to implement efficiently – and in a socially equitable manner – a road pricing system in Los Angeles, how increasing digitalization can better interlink transportation options and services, and how the search for parking spaces could be organized much more intelligently.

Overall, participants were convinced that more accessible mobility options can impact urban development positively and can help reach social, economic, and environmental targets. However, the complex system of different offerings and operators require the commitment and willingness to adapt of all involved. 

At the BMW Group we are truly inspired by the drive and innovative power of the stakeholder community in LA and aim to contribute transportation expertise and technologies to collectively help build an (even) better Los Angeles.

Download the 2020 Mobility Lab presentation here.


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Open Manufacturing Platform Welcomes New Members

The Open Manufacturing Platform, otherwise known as OMP, has expanded and now has new steering committee members and working groups. Founded in 2019, the OMP works to help manufacturing companies accelerate innovation at scale through cross-industry collaboration, data-sharing, and accessing new technologies. 

The BMW Group has been an original member of the group along with Microsoft. New additions to the group include:  Anheuser – Busch InBev, Bosch Group, ZF Friedrichshafen AG. Through its work the steering committee has approved a number of working groups to focus on core areas of importance in the industry including IoT connectivity, semantic data models, autonomous transport systems, and more. 

Learn more at: http://bit.ly/32LjAGe


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BMW Partners with NY Fashion Week

BMW of North America returned to NYFW as the Official Automotive Partner to celebrate the road less traveled and to highlight the inspiring voices who are driving change in fashion and culture. Through this partnership, BMW presented a digital content series highlighting four fashion industry notables and the unconventional paths which have led to their success in addition hosting multiple engaging experiences on site. 

Read the full article: http://bit.ly/2uVU70s


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MINI USA Launches Ordering For EV Mini Cooper

MINI USA has just launched ordering for the all-new battery electric MINI Cooper SE. The vehicle makes electric mobility more “MINI” and is a creative solution to create a highly efficient car with a small carbon footprint while being fun to drive, and accessible to consumers.

Read the full story: https://bit.ly/2Srn4c3


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BMW Receives Green Car Technology of the Year Award

Recently, BMW received the Green Car Journal’s Green Car Technology of the Year Award for the company’s cutting-edge Inductive Charging Pilot Program. The program allows participating BMW customers to test the wireless inductive technology to charge their vehicles eliminating the need for plug in charging. The program also makes BMW the first automotive manufacturer to allow consumers to use this technology. 

“BMW Wireless Charging represents a milestone in the evolution of vehicle electrification, making owning and driving a plug-in hybrid vehicle an even more seamless experience,” said Ron Cogan, Editor and Publisher of Green Car Journal, “Today’s pairing of BMW’s innovative inductive charging and 530e plug-in hybrid illustrates how the future of automatic electric vehicle charging can be as simple as parking your car. It’s a deserving winner of 2020 Green Car Technology of the Year™.”

Starting in Germany, the Inductive Charging Pilot Program expanded to the US in mid-2019 and became available to select residential home customers in California. The Wireless Charging is made up of an Inductive Charging Station otherwise known as the GroundPad and a secondary vehicle component known as the CarPad, that is fixed to the underside of the vehicle. The contactless transfer of energy between the GroundPad and CarPad work together to generate a magnetic field, which allows for the safe transfer of energy with a high efficiency rate.

Read more: http://bit.ly/3bkse2u


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Economic Development in the Palmetto State

The Spartanburg plant has set itself apart from other car manufacturing plants. Since its inception, it has positively affected South Carolina by spurring economic development. Both the plant and BMW have grown bigger and better than anyone expected. 

Today, BMW employs over 11,000 people who represent areas all across South Carolina. The Spartanburg plant itself has created an annual economic impact in the United States of over $43 billion and produces over 1,500 vehicles each day. Not only has BMW changed the way the world sees South Carolina, it has also changed how the state approaches economic development. 

A 2017 report from the Darla Moore School of Business determined that BMW provides a statewide employment multiplier of 4. Meaning, for every job created at the plant, another three jobs are created in the state. This helps drive South Carolina’s ability to be a part of the global marketplace. 

In addition to jobs, the state gains clear benefits through tax revenue, sustainability initiatives, and BMW’s commitment to community programs. Between 1996 and 2014 the company gave $36 million to educational, cultural, and civic programs in the Upstate.  

BMW leads initiatives that have an impact on everything from local tourism to education.  Through its nonprofit foundation, the BMW Charity Pro-Am golf tournament fundraises millions of dollars for charities, generates tourism, and supports 140 jobs. The company’s environmental stewardship has led to a wide range of initiatives from increasing green energy use to reducing waste. Through Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research, the country’s only graduate department of automotive engineering, education has received a boost. In addition, the BMW Scholars program was launched in 2011 to provide hands-on training, paid employment, and tuition assistance to students pursuing associate degrees at four technical colleges. 

Looking ahead, The BMW Group will invest in changing technology and understanding new market demands.  It will continue to expand the Spartanburg plant through production of a new generation of X model sport utility vehicles, including two hybrid electric vehicles. In addition, the company will add 1,000 new jobs through 2021, further empowering the state of South Carolina. 

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The BMW Group Attends the 10th Annual Sustainable Innovation Forum During COP25

The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP25) marked an important step in the global challenge to fight climate change and the development of creative and innovative solutions. This year, Glenn Schmidt, Vice President of Government and External Affairs at the BMW Group, provided opening remarks at the 10thAnnual Sustainable Innovation Forum. Through his remarks, Schmidt affirmed the BMW Group’s commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement, highlighted the importance of a global shift to a low-carbon society, and provided the audience with a preview of future mobility as we scale production of electrified vehicles. 

Additionally, Schmidt took part in the Forum’s Climate Leader Interviews, where he provided details on the BMW Group’s innovative sustainability approach, the importance of collaboration in long-lasting solutions, and trends seen in future EV production. The interview highlighted the BMW Group’s key sustainability strategies and included how the BMW Group is supporting the global shift towards a low-carbon society.

Read the full interview at: https://bit.ly/2Zr9j0m


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Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom” Receives BMW’s and UNAOC Intercultural Innovation Award

The Muslim-Jewish American “Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom” is one of the ten organizations awarded this year with the Intercultural Innovation Award, given by the BMW Group and the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations. The award focuses on selecting highly innovative grassroots projects that promote dialogue and intercultural understanding while making vital contributions to prosperity and peace in global societies. The organization went through a highly competitive selection process with over 1200 applications from 128 countries. 

The Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom is a Muslim-Jewish grassroots organization focused on inter-faith engagement geared towards building the respect, trust, and relationships necessary to prevent and combat hate, negative stereotyping, and prejudice. As a movement of thousands of women and girls, the organization is changing the way the two faith groups view one another to celebrate their commonalities and respect their differences. 

During the course of the year, the selected projects, including the Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom, will have the opportunity to utilize expertise and resources from the BMW Group and the UNAOC. In addition to the monetary prize, the finalists will have training activities, workshops, and will become members of the “Intercultural Leaders” network where they will receive customized project support. 

The BMW Group has been working for many years now to promote intercultural understanding and dialogue. Beginning in 1997, the BMW Group Award for Intercultural Learning was presented to 40 innovative projects aimed at fostering a sustainable and open relationship between different communities. In 2010, the BMW Group began to award individual consultancy from company associates in addition to the prize money. In 2011, BMW started a partnership with the UNAOC where they established the Intercultural Innovation Award. This model of collaboration between the United Nations and the private sector creates a deeper impact while utilizing each partner’s expertise to grow and sustain each individual project. 


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Employees of the BMW Group Give Back to Local Communities

The BMW Group isn’t just making strides in sustainability and EV technology, employees are also creating a positive impact outside of their roles and in local communities. Through BMW’s Connected Culture Club, BMW and MINI employees took part in two volunteering initiatives to help those in need.

In October, BMW & MINI employees spent time volunteering at Backpacks for Life, a non-profit organization geared towards providing aid to the homeless and at-risk veterans. Through this organization, employees spent their time sorting and filling backpacks with essentials like toiletries, warm clothing, and water bottles and distributed them to those in need. 

Co-Founder of Backpacks for Life, Alexa Modero stated, “I wanted to thank you for such a successful packing event today! The volunteers were extremely helpful and we’re grateful for your support.” 

In November, BMW employees had the chance to spend time volunteering with Upwardly Global. Employees helped skilled legal immigrants prepare for real-life job interviews through mock interviews, mentorship, and networking to help immigrants better navigate the U.S. workforce. The guidance, commitment, and support that our employees provided left a positive impact on those seeking jobs and event organizers. 

“So many of my job seekers left the event feeling recharged and motivated to continue on and push forward,” stated Mary Sise, Program Manager of  Upwardly Global in New York.

Tori Travers, Upwardly Global’s Partnerships and Volunteer Program Lead added, “Please pass along our gratitude to the attending BMW volunteers. I didn’t realize most of them commuted in from New Jersey – we truly appreciate that level of commitment and enthusiasm. We were also excited to see many volunteers exchanging contact information with jobseekers, sharing jobseeker profiles with fellow volunteers, and prolonging the event to network further – it was a wonderful level of care.” 

To learn more about Backpacks for Life and Upwardly Global please visit: https://www.upwardlyglobal.org

https://www.backpacksforlife.org


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BMW Sustainability Fact Check

It’s important to keep companies accountable for the goals they set. That is why the BMW Group released the latest facts on the Group’s commitment towards improving sustainability. In 2012, BMW set ten sustainability targets focused on three key areas: products and services; production and value creation; employees and society. Today, the Group has continued to be instrumental as a leader in electric vehicles, reduction in the consumption of resources, and being recognized as one of the most sustainable automobile manufacturers in the world by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Learn more about BMW’s sustainable achievements at: https://bit.ly/2YC00do


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Building Bridges for Sustainable Development

Sustainability doesn’t always mean supply chains. BMW is bringing people together to create long-lasting and sustainable solutions. Each year, Zukunftbrucke, also known as The Future Bridge Initiative, brings 30 participants from China and Germany where they are given the opportunity to receive further professional and intercultural training while being able to exchange ideas. This past October, the initiative met in both Berlin and Paretz and focused on building sustainable partnerships with this year’s topic being ‘Achieving the 2030 Agenda – Rethinking Global Partnerships for Sustainable Development’. This innovative approach has built a comprehensive and active network within key countries focused on solving global problems. Learn more about BMW’s initiative and the partnerships at: https://bit.ly/2PbioXn


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The BMW Group Joins the Getting to Zero Coalition

The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 25) began in Madrid, where global leaders and stakeholders are convening to take the next steps to fight climate change. The BMW Group has been an active partner in the COP Conferences since 2008 and is a global leader in electric mobility and green energy. This year, the group will present its expertise on sustainable development, electric mobility, and renew its involvement as a headline sponsor of the Sustainable Innovation Forum, one of the leading sustainability conferences in the UN COP fringe program. 

The BMW Group has also committed to further reduce carbon emissions by joining the “Getting to Zero Coalition”. The initiative is a partnership between the Global Maritime Forum, the Friends of Ocean Action, and the World Economic Forum and focuses on using zero-emission cargo vessels from 2030. Through its participation with the Getting to Zero Coalition, the BMW Group is continuing to push for decarbonization, applying sustainability strategies along the value chain, and furthering the development of electric mobility. 

Read the full article here: http://bit.ly/2Yu1dUf


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The BMW Group and Straus Organic Dairy Farm Partner to Provide California Clean Energy

The manufacturing of electric vehicles means more than just producing sustainable cars. It means creating a sustainable process from beginning to end. The BMW Group and Straus Organic Dairy Farm recently announced a partnership that will not only reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases from farming, but will deliver the cleanest fuel possible to EV drivers in California. By plugging in their cars to charge, EV drivers will have the ability to access renewable energy from methane biodigesters. Learn more at: https://bit.ly/2D6L5OB


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Wunderbar Together PopUp Tour in Portland Focuses on Sustainable Mobility

Wunderbar Together, is a year-long, collaborative initiative by the German Foreign Office, Goethe-Institute, and the Federation of German Industries (BDI) that presents participants with diverse projects and events related to politics, business, education, culture and science. Wunderbar Together celebrates the enduring friendship and longstanding cultural and economic ties between Germany and the United States with over 250 partners and more than 1,500 events spanning across the United States.

In October 2019, the BMW Group participated as a key sponsor of the Wunderbar Together PopUp Tour in Portland, Oregon, to emphasize the importance of German-American unity and its commitment to creating sustainable solutions that improve the future of mobility. The Portland PopUp tour featured a culture tent with mobile presentation modules and numerous edutainment elements with programs ranging from conferences, panel discussions, and science slams to art exhibits and concerts.  

“We came to Portland because it is the model of a vibrant, sustainability-focused, and environmentally conscious metropolis,” stated Lisa Errion-Saums, Vice President of Government and External Affairs for the Americas at the BMW Group. “With its many highly reputed research and education institutions and a fertile ground for the creation of start-ups, Portland provides ideal conditions to create sustainable solutions for the mobility of the future.”

The week was filled with events that allowed the BMW Group to connect and engage with a diverse group of Portland stakeholders to hear firsthand about their vision for sustainable mobility and issues being faced by metropolitan areas world-wide. 

Discussions on Future Mobility

“Electromobility and the Grid”

Taking a deeper dive into the topic of future mobility, the BMW Group hosted two panel discussions: “Electromobility and the Grid”, a discussion on how to empower the mobility and energy transformation in Oregon, and “Shaping the Future of Urban Mobility through Innovation”, a discussion, in collaboration with URBAN-X by MINI, highlighting examples of successful start-ups who have implemented innovative, disruptive concepts to help shape the future of urban mobility. Both panels presented participants with a safe space to exchange ideas and gain valuable insights on the need for improved solutions for the future of mobility.   

“Shaping the Future of Urban Mobility through Innovation”

Short Talk: “Design for Mobility”

“Design for Mobility”

Designworks, the design innovation studio for the BMW Group, presented a series of short talks on “Design for Mobility”. During this event, participants gained valuable insights from design experts on their work on mobility, future mobility trends, and sustainable system design for urban areas.

Science Slam: “Our City 2040”

Science Slam: “Our City 2040”

Organized by Policult, the BMW Group also hosted Science Slam: “Our City 2040”, a moderated TED-talk style competition featuring young scientists from the United States and Germany. Kerry Aszklar, from Portland State University, was the winner of the competition, winning a four-day trip to Munich, Germany to visit the BMW Group Headquarters, the BMW Museum, and the BMW Welt. Her submission focused on physical activity in future mobility and the gender gap in bicycling.

Other winners included: 

  • Johannes Kretzschmar – “Frankenstein’s Electric Car”
  • Sabina Roan – “Infrastructure Solutions for Earthquake Hazards”
  • Benjamin Panreck – “Robot Myon and the Knee Bend”

To learn more about Wunderbar Together, please visit https://wunderbartogether.org


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Human Rights in the Supply Chain: BMW to Directly Source Cobalt for Electric Vehicles

Electromobility is more than just a trend, it’s becoming a large share of future mobility. To account for the transition to electrified vehicles, the BMW Group is taking precautions within our supply chain to combat any violations of human rights in the sourcing of materials like cobalt. Beginning next year, through the “Cobalt for Development” project, the BMW Group will source raw cobalt for electric vehicles directly and will incorporate it into the overall supply chain, maintaining full responsibility and transparency over where the raw material comes from. Read more: http://bit.ly/2Mt0i1S


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MINI’s Accelerator, URBAN-X, Graduates Sixth Cohort

URBAN-X, a startup accelerator geared towards reimagining city life, recently graduated its sixth cohort of startup companies during an official ClimateWeek NYC event in Brooklyn. The startup accelerator invests $150,000 per company to build solutions to combat climate and related challenges. Read more: http://bit.ly/33hx9fJ


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BMW and Greenbiz Group Discuss Sustainability and Future Mobility [Part 2]

As the European market’s leader in electric vehicles, we are committed to creating innovative solutions that help drive sustainability and the future of mobility. Recently, our Head of Sustainability for Product and Production, Jury Witschnig, sat down with Greenbiz Group’s President and Co-founder, Pete May, for an in-depth conversation on what renewable energy, the circular economy, and an all-electric rollout means to us. Read Part 2 of the interview here: http://bit.ly/2OxVU3a


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BMW and Greenbiz Group Discuss Sustainability and Future Mobility [Part 1]

As the European market’s leader in electric vehicles, we are committed to creating innovative solutions that help drive sustainability and the future of mobility. Recently, our Head of Sustainability for Product and Production, Jury Witschnig, sat down with Greenbiz Group’s President and Co-founder, Pete May, for an in-depth conversation on what renewable energy, the circular economy, and an all-electric rollout means to us. Read Part 1 of the interview here: http://bit.ly/3120qcJ


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BMW Celebrates MSTEP Graduates

At BMW, it is our desire to serve those who have graciously served us. Last week, we honored the graduating class of our Military Service Technician Education Program (MSTEP) and celebrated a pivotal moment in BMW history as we welcomed our very first female graduate.

Established in 2018, MSTEP is a 16-week technical educational program that provides active duty military veterans with the opportunity to transition from military to civilian careers. The program, and our partnership with the Universal Technical Institute (UTI), exposes each student to cutting-edge, technical training courses in a workshop, hands-on environment. Upon completion of the program, graduates are given the opportunity to secure employment as a certified BMW automotive technician. 

Advances in technology have changed the way we do work, creating a world where innovative, technical skills are in high demand. That is why BMW is committed to equipping individuals to become the next generation of highly skilled BMW technicians by providing them with advanced education and hands-on training experience that will ensure their professional success. Currently located on Camp Pendleton in California, MSTEP serves as an example of our commitment.

At BMW, we believe diversity makes us who we are and drives us forward. Through this unique program, and partnership with the US Military, we have helped empower a highly motivated and talented group of individuals who are trained to use some of the world’s leading technologies. Through MSTEP, graduates not only refine their existing skills and knowledge, but also acquire new skills to ensure a promising and rewarding career. 

Join us as we celebrate the graduating class of MSTEP 04 and welcome future members of MSTEP.

To learn more about BMW MSTEP, please visit https://www.bmwstep.com/bmw-mstep/


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BMW Partners with Sustainable Dairy Farmers

What do dairy farms and smart vehicles have in common? A shared passion for innovative solutions that are good both for the environment and for local business and communities.

Through a new partnership with Straus Farms, an organic, California-based dairy farm and renewable energy producer, BMW is using green energy produced by Straus Farms to power their smart vehicles in Sonoma, California. Straus Farms uses advanced,  sustainable technology such as biodigestion, to create green electricity that California recognizes as having negative carbon emissions. Through its participation in BMW ChargeForward ,which allows drivers of smart vehicles to charge with green energy, Straus Farms provides smart charging to drivers in its local community.

Through this unique partnership, BMW and Straus Farms have met strict environmental standards and rules set in California, such as the Low Carbon Fuel Standard set this year. The program allows automakers like BMW to partner with renewable energy producers like Straus Farms to claim environmental credits and generate revenue for both businesses. Revenue, which for local farms like Straus Farms, can be used to continue to expand their sustainability practices.

Straus Farms hopes to build a second biodigester, and through the revenue generated by future partnerships like this one, eventually become the first carbon-neutral dairy farm in the world.

To learn more about BMW ChargeForward, please visithttps://bmwmovement.org/educationprogram/charge-forward/


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Investing in Our Local Communities

Photo provided by WCLEF Run for Education

The BMW Group believes that to be a good corporate citizen, you must be an active and engaged member of the communities of which you are part. We are continually putting this belief into action in a variety of ways to help meet the specific needs of the communities where we work. By adapting our contributions to each specific community and collaborating with other organizations, we are maximizing our impact and helping solve real-world challenges. Read below to find out more about our local efforts.

Red Cross of New Jersey

The BMW Group has long been a supporter of the American Red Cross and was recently honored with the William W. Augustine Award from the Red Cross of New Jersey. The award recognizes BMW of North America’s First Aid Kit Program, which donates $5 to the Red Cross for every purchase of an official BMW first aid kit. The proceeds, which have exceeded over $1 million, support every aspect of the Red Cross mission, including disaster relief, blood collections, training, and essential services to military members and their families.

Woodcliff Lake Educational Foundation (WCLEF) Run for Education

In June of this year, the Woodcliff Lake Educational Foundation (WCLEF) and BMW of North America hosted the 33rd annual Run for Education. The 10K and 5K family-friendly run had over 800 participants, making it one of the largest annual events in Woodcliff Lake—the home of the BMW Group’s U.S. headquarters.

Through partnerships with local businesses and the local community, WCLEF supports local schools each year by providing funding for technology and digital educational programs, musical instruments, and more.

Table to Table

BMW of North America is a proud corporate sponsor of Table to Table—a community-based food rescue program that collects prepared and perishable food that would otherwise be wasted and delivers it to organizations serving the hungry in the Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Passaic counties of New Jersey.

Our sponsorship helps Table to Table achieve their mission of providing healthy food, free of charge to over 175 community organizations including food pantries, shelters, daycare/after school programs, senior adult centers, and programs serving the working poor. Table to Table has promised to support the New Jersey community by providing 22 million meals this year.

Palmetto Classic and No Greater Sacrifice (NGS)

In June, the BMW Group’s Washington, DC office hosted the 4th annual Palmetto Classic Charity Golf Tournament, raising $45,000 for No Greater Sacrifice (NGS)—a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the children of our nation’s fallen and wounded Service members. NGS provides scholarships and resources to improve the lives of these children through the pursuit of higher education and has committed more than $12.5 million in post-high school education benefits.

BMW Manufacturing Co.

The BMW Group has been producing vehicles at the BMW Manufacturing Co. in Spartanburg, South Carolina since 1994. For just as long, we have been supporting organizations in the Upstate region who contribute to communities where our associates live and work. Over the last two decades, BMW Manufacturing Co. has donated more than $40 million to educational, cultural and civic programs across this region, as well as a several local and statewide organizations.

BMW also proudly serves as the title sponsor of the BMW Charity Pro-Am presented by SYNNEX Corporation. The annual golf tournament, which is operated by South Carolina Charities, Inc., is the only tournament on the Web.com Tour where amateurs and celebrities join professionals in a four-day competition to raise funds for and awareness of local charities. Since 2001, the tournament has raised and distributed $13 million in funding to more than 200 charities.

At BMW, we are more than just a company, we are corporate citizens. We see ourselves as engaged members of the communities we are a part of and believe that every community partnership is an instrument of change.


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BMW of North America Donates 100 New Electric Vehicle Charging Stations for Visitors to America’s National Parks

Recently, through a partnership with the National Park Foundation, the National Park Service, and the Department of Energy, the BMW Group announced the successful completion of its project to donate 100 electric vehicle charging stations in and near to national parks throughout the United States. So far, more than 90 of the charging stations have been installed, with the remainder on track to open this month. 

“We can’t think of a better way to enjoy the summer than visiting one of America’s beautiful national parks. In making electric vehicle charging more widely available for everyone, this joint effort serves to make America’s national parks more accessible to drivers of electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles,” said Bernhard Kuhnt, president and CEO, BMW of North America.

The use of public-private partnerships was essential in completing this important project. “Thanks to public-private partnership, electric vehicle drivers can enjoy a quintessential national park road trip,” said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation. “Not only will drivers benefit, but also the businesses and communities at the doorstep of our treasured national parks.” 

When identifying site locations, the team considered the following factors: the proximity and strength of EV markets, distance from nearby charging locations, and natural and cultural landscapes. The Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office has provided technical assistance that supports innovative energy saving transportation projects at national park sites. These projects educate visitors on the benefits of advanced and alternative fuel vehicles and can help the National Park Service meet their energy, economic, and environmental goals. These projects are beneficial because they have the opportunity to reach far beyond the boundaries of the national parks. 

For more information please view the full article here.


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BMW North America Celebrates WorldPride in New York

At BMW, we believe in equality for all and are committed to showing our support for diversity and inclusion. This June, we are proud to show our alliance with those who are celebrating Pride Month.  2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising and brings WorldPride to the United States for the first time. WorldPride NYC is expected to be one of the largest LGBTQIA+ events in history. To celebrate, BMW North America is launching a multipart campaign.

“QUEER CITY: A CNN Experience” Multi Media Museum Experience

Together with CNN, BMW will present “QUEER CITY: A CNN Experience” a free multimedia museum experience on June 27 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Hudson Mercantile (463 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10018) that explores the real stories of people behind the landmark moments in New York City’s queer history. Leveraging a historic time when photo booths represented an opportunity for members of the community to freely express themselves behind a private curtain, BMW will activate an on-site photo booth for guests. Inside the booth, attendees can express what Pride means to them, and then display their photos on an exhibit wall to become a part of the pride experience.

GLAAD Partnership

On June 28, BMW will partner with GLAAD, outside of their NYC headquarters leading up to the weekend’s events. The company will make a donation to GLAAD and provide food, beverages and giveaways, while a fleet of BMW X7 Sports Activity Vehicles will deliver t-shirts to over 200 GLAAD volunteers.

Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for BMW

Jonathan Adler-Designed BMW 8 Series Convertibles

The celebration culminates on June 28 with the debut of a BMW 8 Series Convertible wrapped in a custom Pride design from American designer, and a prominent voice in the NYC LGBTQIA+ community, Jonathan Adler. The wrap features a rainbow design along the door’s driver and passenger doors that connects to form a heart on the front hood. Jonathan Adler will share his journey to the WorldPride NYC Parade in the BMW 8 Series Convertible on BMWUSA’s Instagram page. Additionally, there will be a fleet of Pride wrapped BMW 8 Series Convertibles carrying the WorldPride Parade’s grand marshals, including Monica Helms, Phyll Opoku-Gyimah, select cast members of the hit series “Pose,” and community members from The Trevor Project. 


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BMW Continues To Meet Sustainability Goals

The BMW Group understands that shaping sustainable mobility requires setting ambitious goals and carrying out rigorous measurement to ensure constant improvement. To this end, we recently released the 2018 edition of our annual Sustainable Value Report (SVR). The 2018 SVR provides information on current measures and achievements during the 2018 reporting year, as well as updates on concrete progress towards fulfilment of the company’s sustainability goals. 

“Sustainability is a holistic task that is firmly anchored in our corporate strategy,” says Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “In addition to developing innovative products and services, responsible use of resources is another central concern of all that we do—with clear objectives and measures that we are setting for ourselves and successfully implementing.” 

The BMW Group set ten strategic sustainability targets, which we have been consistently pursuing since 2001 with the goal of having full completion by 2020. These goals fit within three key areas: products and services; production and value creation; and employees and society. 

The hard work has been paying off. Some of the progress we made in 2018 includes:

More than 140,000 electrified vehicles sold worldwide 

Today, we are the European market leaders in electric vehicles and  are electrifying all brands and model series. Our approach isn’t just reducing emissions and increasing sustainability, we’re also expanding our customers’ digital world into their vehicles.

79 percent of electricity purchased worldwide from renewable resources 

We’re working to reduce our overall environmental footprint during the manufacturing process. By 2020, we are working to have all plants worldwide run on green electricity.

Relative CO2 emissions per vehicle produced decreased by 2.4 percent    

We will continue to meet the statutory COlimit worldwide. By 2020, we will have reduced CO2 emissions in the European new vehicle fleet by at least 50 percent.

Over the coming years, the BMW Group will continue to push towards achieving increasingly ambitious sustainability goals across all areas of our business and in every market where we operate. In the U.S., BMW Movement will continue to showcase what the company is doing both internally, and in our communities as good corporate citizens, to ensure that we are leading the way as the most sustainable mobility provider in the world. 

For an overview of the Sustainable Value Report, please see our 2018 Sustainability Factbook


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Meet the Women of BMW

At the BMW Group, we rely on a diverse and inspired workforce to collaborate on the creative and future-focused solutions that drive innovation. That’s why, in celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re honoring the Women of BMW who make important contributions to our company, our customers and our communities.

These women, who are members of BMW Group teams across the United States and come from various backgrounds and fields of expertise, are valuable teammates and leaders in their roles within our organization.

We sat down with the first-annual Women of BMW honorees to find out about their careers, insights and what drives them each day. We invite you to take a moment and learn about these dedicated women and congratulate them with kudos on Twitter with #WomenOfBMW.


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LA Auto Show / Veloz Symposium

Caption: Veloz Executive Director, Josh Boone, opens the “Putting the Pedal to the Medal” forum in Los Angeles on Nov. 29, 2018.

Amidst the excitement of the LA Auto Show, which brings 1,000 vehicles and countless auto enthusiasts together each year, there is an unmistakable buzz around what the future holds for sustainability and the car industry. BMW Group is helping lead the charge in accelerating the shift to electromobility in California by partnering with key sector companies, agencies and other nonprofits through the collaborative non-profit, Veloz.

Leading into the auto show, Veloz convened stakeholders for an in-depth forum on California’s electric car culture called, “Putting the Pedal to the Metal.” The forum sponsored by Veloz founding members BMW, Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power included insightful conversations about how automakers are accelerating electric cars in California, how California companies are advancing transportation electrification, and gubernatorial leadership on electric transportation.

Dr. Thomas Becker, Vice President of Government & External Affairs at BMW AG, joined the symposium to offer his perspective on fuel economy standards, the latest on BMW’s electric vehicle roadmap, and the company’s footprint in California.

BMW Group’s Electric Vehicle Roadmap

According to Dr. Becker, the BMW Group is committed to reducing the emissions of its fleet. In fact, the BMW Group has already introduced a significant number of fuel-saving technologies and implemented those throughout almost all of its model portfolio.

By 2025, the BMW Group will offer 25 electrified vehicles—12 of which will be fully electric. The first series electric MINI will be released in 2019 and the company will be introducing the first BMW SUV model—the X3—as a BEV in 2020.

During the LA Auto Show, the BMW Group premiered the iNEXT, our next technological innovation, due in 2021. Highly automated, emission-free, and fully connected, the BMW iVision NEXT brings together the BMW Group’s strategic innovation fields into a Vision Vehicle for the first time.

BMW Group’s Footprint in California

The LA Auto Show is an important event for the BMW Group given its own facilities and close relationships throughout the state. From their Designworks studio in LA to the R&D facilities in Mountain View and a Vehicle Emissions Testing Center in Oxnard, BMW is driving innovation in the state of California.

This year, BMW and PG&E, a fellow Veloz founding member, introduced the most advanced smart charging program, ChargeForward, to support utility grid efficiencies through management of vehicle charging times.

BMW is also partnering with the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) in helping to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies. Dr. Becker is certain that LACI will lead the convergence toward a future that integrates shared mobility, zero emissions goods movement, and autonomy. Over the summer, BMW contributed to the ZEV Roadmap, which sets the goal to move toward an additional 25 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution beyond current commitments through accelerating transportation electrification. The goal is to achieve this reduction by the time the world arrives in Los Angeles for the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Other local collaborations include a fleet of more than 200 all-electric BMW i3s at the LA Police Department to help the city improve the efficiency of their fleet and thus reach their sustainability targets, and a living laboratory at UC Davis, the world’s leading transportation policy institute, that will help inform other campuses, small cities, and towns about what to expect when integrating electric vehicles into fleets.

The kind of collaboration made possible by Veloz assembling such a high-powered and diverse board with membership of key sector companies, agencies, and nonprofits can help overcome barriers that still exist in advancing electrification.

“Making the big shift to electric cars is not simple or easy—consumer awareness and a favorable policy framework are key to success,” said Dr. Becker. “This is a new model for addressing a complicated problem. If successful, it can be a model for other states and nations. At BMW we are committed to Veloz and want to help accelerate the shift to electric cars in California.”

 


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LA CoMotion

In November, LA CoMotion brought together global mayors, leading technologists, public transit providers, as well as venture capitalists, start-ups, and mobility experts all with one shared vision—to transform every city in the world through the urban mobility revolution. The event included a Leadership Conference and a Mobility Festival, which provided attendees the opportunity to gain insights from mobility leaders and a first-hand immersive experience with the latest mobility tech.

MINI showcased the future of urban living and discussed its role and approach to solving urban mobility problems with NewCities.

MINI + Innovation

As an iconic urban brand, MINI has carried forward its roots as a visionary of efficient urban mobility that maximizes creative use of space to innovate beyond cars. MINI’s approach focuses on the future of electrified mobility, impactful design, urban living, and the important interplay between these areas.

MINI brought an Urban Living Cabin to the mobility festival to demonstrate how the creative use of space translates to real solutions for how we live, work and interact in our cities. Through URBAN-X, A/D/O, MINI Living, and MINI Fashion, the MINI brand is evolving into a lifestyle brand, investing in urban-tech startups, championing new approaches to urban living, and rethinking life, work, and play in urban environments.

Fireside Chat – The Human Connection

During LA CoMotion, BMW AG board member Peter Schwarzenbauer sat down for a fireside chat with Greg Lindsay, Senior Mobility Fellow at NewCities to discuss the human connection to future mobility. According to Mr. Schwarzenbauer, “The BMW Group has more responsibility than just creating cars. As a carmaker, the BMW Group sees its role in helping cities organize mobility to better serve citizens and provide service and product offerings across the entire mobility chain. The future shall be with zero accidents and zero emissions.” Watch the conversation in its entirety here.

No individual or group can revolutionize urban mobility on their own—forums like LA CoMotion play an important role in bringing together the movers and shakers of the mobility space and encouraging collaborative solutions.

One such collaboration is with the LA Cleantech Incubator (LACI), which was also supporting and partnering with LA CoMotion. Mr. Schwarzenbauer took the opportunity to meet with LACI President and CEO to tour the facility in close proximity to LA CoMotion and discuss BMW’s partnership and support for their work to accelerate transportation electrification and zero emissions goods movement. Learn more about BMW’s partnership with LACI here.

Caption: BMW AG board member Peter Schwarzenbauer touring the LA Cleantech Incubator with President and CEO Matt Petersen and Alex Mitchell.

Looking to the future of technology and mobility, Mr. Schwarzenbauer believes, “With view to augmented and virtual reality I believe humans will want to meet other people in person. Mobility can help create this room for human connection. Electrification can be highly emotional and fun.”


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BMW Dealers, BMW NA Team Up to Support Homebound Elderly as Holidays Approach

At October’s National Dealer Forum meeting in New York, BMW NA partnered with the BMW National Dealer Forum to donate $10,000 to Citymeals on Wheels.

Citymeals on Wheels New York City serves the elderly through hand-delivered meals on weekends, during holidays, and in emergencies, including severe weather.

In the spirit of collaboration sought at the Dealer Forum meetings, this donation was borne out of initial plans for forum members and BMW of North America executives and leaders to roll up their sleeves and volunteer at Citymeals on Wheels in The Bronx.

When schedules and logistics changed to make that impossible, the dealers and BMW NA quickly decided that they wouldn’t be leaving NYC without making an impact – and collaborated, financially – on a $10,000 donation to the organization.

“We usually have at least one Forum meeting in New York City each year,” said Pat Womack, Chairman of the National Dealer Forum. “When it became clear that our volunteering opportunity would not be possible, we still wanted a chance to give back to the city that has hosted the Forum so many times.”

“While we had looked forward to working with our dealer partners as volunteers at Citymeals on Wheels,” said Bernhard Kuhnt, President and CEO, BMW NA, “logistics weren’t in our favor. We’re pleased to be able to partner with our dealers on the Forum to help meals get where they’re needed for New York City’s homebound seniors.”

The $10,000 check was presented to Citymeals on Wheels at the Dealer Forum dinner at Manhattan’s Café Boulud.  Citymeals on Wheels has been a lifeline of nourishment, serving homebound elderly New Yorkers since being founded by restaurant critic Gael Greene and cookbook author and culinary personality James Beard in 1981.


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