The Earthshot Prize, established by Prince William in 2020, aims to identify and support innovative climate and environmental solutions worldwide to protect and rejuvenate our planet.
ENSO’s selection as a finalist underscores the growing recognition of the critical role that tires play in environmental pollution. With around 1.5 billion vehicles worldwide, including an increasing number of EVs, all relying on tires that wear down and emit harmful particulate matter, addressing tire pollution has become a crucial aspect of the global fight against climate change. Surprisingly, tires are responsible for emitting an astonishing six million tonnes of pollution annually, surpassing the airborne particulate matter emissions from all vehicle tailpipes combined.
ENSO’s primary mission is to develop tires specifically designed for EVs, not only improving tire longevity and performance but also significantly reducing harmful tire pollution. After a rigorous selection process involving experts in various fields, ENSO was chosen from over 1,100 nominations.
Founder and CEO of ENSO, Gunnlaugur Erlendsson, stressed the urgency of addressing tire pollution, saying, “We urgently need to talk about tyres and how they pollute our air. Tyre pollution is a pressing problem for all vehicles, including electric vehicles, so while we can’t make a tyre last forever, we can make them last a lot longer, and pollute a lot less. ENSO’s technology, values, and scalable business model help Clean our Air, paving the way for a better future for us all. By doubling tyre durability, we can halve tyre pollution, it’s as simple as that. Thank you to The Earthshot Prize for highlighting the impact of tyre pollution and recognizing our efforts to help us all live and breathe a bit easier.”
ENSO sets itself apart through a combination of technological innovation and a disruptive business model aimed at making low-emission tires accessible to all consumers. Unlike conventional tires, ENSO’s tires are precisely engineered to enhance durability and reduce particulate pollution. In trials conducted in collaboration with Transport for London, ENSO’s tires outperformed mainstream competitors, increasing EV range by 10% and reducing particulate matter emissions by an impressive 35%.
As the global automotive industry increasingly shifts toward EVs, the persistent issue of tire pollution poses a significant threat to the proven environmental benefits of this transition. ENSO provides a promising alternative to traditional tire technology by creating tires tailored to the specific needs of EVs. Their innovative “tires-as-a-service” business model prioritizes longevity over sales volume, thereby reducing particulate emissions and minimizing the extraction and processing of raw materials.
ENSO, the world’s only certified B Corporation tire manufacturer, has already achieved ‘A’ energy efficiency ratings for its ultra-energy-efficient tires. These tires are actively helping EV taxi and delivery fleets in London reduce their environmental footprint while extending vehicle range. ENSO’s ambitions include producing over one million low-emission tires annually by 2026 and expanding into North America in the coming year.
The winners of The Earthshot Prize for 2023 will be selected by Prince William and the distinguished Earthshot Prize Council, which includes influential figures like Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Cate Blanchett, Sir David Attenborough, Jack Ma, and Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, among others.
ENSO’s recognition as an Earthshot Prize finalist underscores the company’s commitment to addressing tire pollution and offering innovative solutions to mitigate its impact. In a world urgently seeking sustainable alternatives, ENSO’s tire technology represents a significant stride toward a cleaner and more environmentally friendly future for all.