Back in 2015 I contributed to opinions on the VW emissions scandal with this piece. Suggesting that instead of the easy option of the CEO going, that he stay.  And I ended with “the extent to which VW and indeed the rest of the automobile industry responds to this scandal and engages in exploring their individual and collective unconsciousness to create real transformation, will be when the rubber hits the road.  The real moment of truth”.

A little update: 

  1. 6 years later, ‘Dieselgate’ is still unfolding and still without a word from Winterkom.
  2. In July this year, VW, Audi and Porsche (all part of the same VW group) along with BMW were fined (Daimler wasn’t fined after it revealed the cartel) $1 billion by the European Union.  For colluding to limit the development and rollout of car emission control systems.
  3. This Tuesday (9 Nov), environmental activist Clara Mayer and the heads of Greenpeace Germany announced they are taking VW to court. For failing to do its part to combat climate change.
  4. Yesterday’s (10 Nov) COP26 declaration on accelerating the transition to zero emission vehicles is notable in the absence of signatories from the automobile industry such as VW. As well as related industries, banks and investors and of course, nation states.    

Undoubtedly we will see more court cases as people turn to the legal system for climate justice.  As Greenpeace tweeted, ‘this is a message to all the corporations who believe their profits are more important than our right to a liveable future on this planet: See you in court”

Again and again, we are called to a new consciousness. For leaders at all levels who can create businesses and organisations that serve people and planet.  The world will settle for nothing less.


Thanks to meric tuna for the photo on Unsplash

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