A new wind turbine at a Rivian plant in Normal, Illinois, is now producing energy. This addition will ensure that every vehicle produced at the assembly line will be initially charged using 100% carbon-free energy.
The turbine’s construction began in May.
The wind turbine aligns with Rivian’s long-term commitment to environmental stewardship. The electric vehicle (EV) maker is dedicated to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. This is ten years ahead of the targets outlined in the Paris Agreement.
In addition, Rivian installed a 783-kilowatt solar canopy at the Normal facility last year.
Featuring a capacity of at least 2.8 megawatts, the wind turbine is expected to generate up to 10 million kilowatt-hours of electricity annually. This translates to approximately 890 average-sized homes in the US.
According to Drive Tesla Canada, the turbine is projected to prevent an estimated 177,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions over its 25-year lifespan. This is equivalent to removing around 34,000 internal combustion engine vehicles from the road for a full year.
Furthermore, this project will yield millions of dollars in energy cost savings for the Normal facility throughout its operational life.
A frequent criticism of EVs is that they plug in to a power grid that is mostly powered by fossil fuels. Therefore, contrary to the claims of manufacturers, they aren’t truly zero-emissions vehicles.
However, this criticism can’t be levied against the EVs that Rivian is manufacturing in Normal.
And as time goes on, technological innovation will make it easier and easier to recharge EVs from fully renewable sources. For instance, a wind and solar tower that was unveiled at the 2023 Detroit Auto Show has the ability to act as a Level 4 EV charging station.
Image Source: Rivian, https://shorturl.at/bEV19