Elon Musk has unveiled the third part of Tesla’s “Master Plan,” in which the company will lead global efforts to wean off fossil fuels and shift the world to sustainable energy. The plan was outlined during an investor event Wednesday held at the company’s Gigafactory in Austin, Texas.
Master Plan 3 includes adding renewable energy to the existing grid, producing more electric vehicles, installing heat pumps in homes and buildings, using high-temperature heat conduction and hydrogen for industrial applications, and building aircraft and boats powered by sustainable fuels. Musk’s plan is to create a “sustainable energy civilization.”
Tesla predicts that it will take $10 trillion in investments to achieve this sustainable future powered by renewable energy. Musk said it’s “not a huge number for the global economy.”
Tesla predicts that it will take $10 trillion in investments to achieve this sustainable future powered by renewable energy
“There is a clear path to sustainable energy on Earth,” Musk said. “It doesn’t require destroying natural habitats. It doesn’t require us to be tough and stop using electricity and kind of be out in the cold or anything.”
A big part of realizing this vision involves expanding the world’s energy storage capacity by up to 240 TWh. During the event, Tesla executives said this could be achieved without the need to extract a large amount of ore. Musk claimed that he would only need less than 30 percent of all the nickel in the Earth. It would also need iron, but Musk isn’t worried, saying it’s the most abundant metal on the planet.
Musk adds that the infrastructure needed for this, including wind and solar energy, will take “less than 0.2 percent” of the Earth’s surface. Details are still light on how all of this is supposed to come to fruition, but Musk has promised to release a white paper outlining the plan soon.
Musk adds that the infrastructure needed for this, including wind and solar energy, will take “less than 0.2 percent” of the Earth’s surface.
“I really wanted today not just Tesla investors who own stocks, but really anyone who is invested in Earth,” Musk said optimistically.
The nearly three-hour event did not include any specific information about the new vehicles. The company teased two mysterious vehicles that remained hidden in the presentation images – one that’s clearly a smaller car and the other that looks like a small commercial truck.
Nor was there any mention of Musk’s other companies, SpaceX and The Boring Company, though Musk had earlier indicated that the third major plan would seek to tie his various projects together.
Tesla demonstrated a new, more efficient car manufacturing process, which will be used for its next generation of vehicles. The company calls it the “boxless process,” which allows the vehicle to be built once on the assembly line and only the parts that need painting to be painted. The automaker also claims that the next-generation engine unit will not use any rare earth metals.
Tesla’s two previous master plans were mostly hit or miss. While the company has been able to achieve most of the goals set in the first plan, which was first published in 2006, the second plan remains largely unfulfilled.
That plan, published in 2016 under the shy title “Part Deux,” said Tesla would create a thriving solar business, introduce multiple new vehicles in all major classes, achieve full autonomy, and launch a robotaxi network for vehicle owners to earn up to $30,000. dollars annually.
While Tesla launched its solar roof business, installations have been slow. Some customers have complained that the prices are too high. The company has scaled back its ambitions as revenue has remained relatively flat.
Tesla has introduced two new vehicles since publishing its second flagship: the Tesla Semi and Cybertruck. Deliveries of the Tesla Semi began late last year, and the Cybertruck is still planned for this year — according to Tesla lead designer Franz von Holzhausen who was on stage at the event. Musk said that mass production of the truck with a strange design will begin in 2024.
Meanwhile, Tesla’s plans for self-driving vehicles are uncertain. While vehicle audiovisual operators like Waymo and Cruise are racking up the miles with its fully driverless robotic hub, Tesla has taken a different approach by rolling out a $15,000 option called Full Self-Driving to hundreds of thousands of customers. Despite the misleading name, an FSD is only a partially autonomous Level 2 system that requires constant monitoring by the driver. Tesla recently halted new FSD installations after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration called them a “collision hazard.”
Likewise, Musk’s promise that Tesla owners with an FSD would be able to earn passive income by sending their cars to pick up passengers independently where the robo-taxi service failed. In recent months, Musk has suggested that Tesla build an autonomous robottaxi, casting doubt on his original suggestion that a Tesla on the road today could qualify for such a service.