News

  • RE100 extends its corporate engagement in India

    For the first time since RE100 began outreach in India last year, RE100 has connected with corporates in Bengaluru; the capital of India’s southern Karnataka state and the hub of India’s high-tech industry.

    Global cloud services corporation Wipro Limited and leading multinational company Tata Global Beverages were among the attendees of the Green Power Market Development Group Steering Committee meeting; jointly organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry and the World Resources Institute.

    Speakers included Rashi Gupta, India Partnership Manager, The Climate Group; Shailesh Telang, Senior Project Officer CDP India; S Chandrasekhar, Chairman, Energy & Power Sub-Committee CII Southern Region and Managing Director, Bhoruka Power Corporation Limited; and Nisha Jayaram, of CII Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre.

    Rashi Gupta shared the global success of the RE100 campaign, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP. There are now 83 members of RE100, all committed to transitioning their electricity supplies to 100% renewable energy. Infosys was the first Indian company to join the initiative, followed by Tata Motors Limited and Dalmia Cement this year. Many more are expected to follow.

    Anurag Priyadarshi, Global Sustainability Manager at Tata Global Beverages said there was much excitement at the company over the potential for renewable energy, right along its supply chain.

    Corporates are however facing challenges in going 100% renewable in India, such as lengthy timescales for government approval on renewable energy projects, a lack of long-term policy stability, and practicalities around implementation. These challenges were discussed during a panel discussion between corporate energy buyers and developers.

    Rashi Gupta, India Partnership Manager at The Climate Group, said: “Leading companies realise that renewable energy benefits their reputations and that it can bring much-needed cost savings too. RE100 provides a platform for companies in India to showcase their ambition and progress, while sending a clear message to governments and investors that renewables are good for business.”

    Later this month Tata Motors will be guest speaking on a RE100 webinar designed to provide peer-to-peer learning for corporates wanting to source renewables in India. For more information on the opportunities in India’s changing market place, read our RE100 briefing.  

  • Gathering momentum: RE100 inspires UK cities and local authorities to work to 100% clean energy by 2050

    RE100 has been championed by UK Climate Change and Industry Minister Nick Hurd at a unique event in London that brought together a prestigious group of leading businesses, cities and local authorities all signed up to 100% clean energy.

    RE100 is a global, collaborative initiative of the world’s most influential companies committed to 100% renewable power, working to shift the energy system away from fossil fuels and accelerate a low carbon economy. The continued growth and success of RE100, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, inspired Here Now to form UK100 last year – an expanding club of 67 UK cities and local authorities signed up to 100% clean energy by 2050.

    The week after the UK government gave its Autumn Statement, the two initiatives partnered with Maitland Green over a roundtable event in Westminster, bringing together dozens of leaders from business and government and a range of wider stakeholders, to showcase momentum for 100% clean energy and demonstrate that collaboration is key.

    The Minister praised both RE100 and UK100 for bringing people together and pushing for further and faster climate action. Acknowledging turbulent times in global politics he said we need to see climate leadership now more than ever – and distributed leadership. He agreed to work with the city and council leaders as the UK government implements its industrial strategy, which has clean energy at its heart.

    In a keynote speech Nick Hurd said: “Cities and communities are important partners for the Government as we transition to a global low carbon economy. Together we can demonstrate that cutting emissions is compatible with economic growth as we build a diverse energy system fit for the 21st century.”

    During the event, the Minister also heard from a number of RE100 members already working to 100% renewable power.

    Caroline Hill, Head of Sustainability at Land Securities, which has installed one of the largest solar arrays on a shopping centre in Europe, said: “Land Securities has been sourcing 100% renewable electricity since April this year, and we’re now working closely with our retail and office customers, and other stakeholders, to increase the wider uptake of renewables. We welcome more collaborative working between the private and public sectors – for example, reviewing how excess capacity generated on private sites can feed into local heating districts. By working together we can accelerate the shift to a cleaner future.”

    Robert Williams, General Manager, Procurement – Utilities, Power & Cooling at BT Group, asked the Minister to reduce the complexity of electricity charges.

    Adam Elman, Head of Global Delivery:  Sustainability / Plan A at Marks & Spencer, highlighted the business case for renewable power.

    Abyd Karmali, Managing Director – Climate Finance at Bank of America underlined the need for supportive government policy.

    Damian Ryan, Acting CEO of The Climate Group said: “RE100 is driving corporate demand for renewables in the UK and around the world, and I’m thrilled to hear it is inspiring local authorities to sign up to go 100% renewable too. Scaling up demand for renewables is good for everyone. More demand means more supply and hence lower energy costs for businesses, councils and hard-working families. Going 100% renewable makes sense for communities and our economy alike.”

    Click here to learn more on how leading councils and businesses are progressing toward 100% clean energy. 

  • Newsletter: COP22, EU policy & our Annual Report

    ALL REGIONS

    Highlights from COP22

    There was plenty of RE100 activity at COP this year, as a number of members went to Marrakech.

    On Energy Day, November 11, India’s Dalmia Cement and Swiss insurer Helvetia joined RE100 with a commitment to 100% renewable power. The new additions take the total number of members to 83, and the total demand for renewable electricity being created to over 100 TWh.

    News of Dalmia Cement joining RE100 was covered by a number of media outlets in India, including The Economic Times and Business Standard. "We are committed to decarbonizing our operations in a way that makes business sense", said Group CEO Mahendra Singhi, who was also interviewed by Climate TV.

    Dalmia Cement is already a member of EP100 - RE100’s sibling corporate energy initiative. On Energy Day, RE100 founding partner Swiss Re also joined EP100, with the goal of doubling its energy productivity by 2020 (baseline 2005). Rachel Kyte, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and CEO of SEforAll praised the leadership of both companies. The Climate Group’s Acting CEO Damian Ryan reflected on their decision to ‘use better energy, better’ in a Guardian Sustainable Business opinion piece facilitated by General Motors.

    RE100 worked closely with IRENA and the European Commission to secure speaking slots for our members at a number of key COP events - helping to demonstrate the strong business case for renewable power. Facebook’s Director of Sustainability Bill Weihl spoke on Business & Industry Day. Formula E’s CEO Alejandro Agag and Mars Incorporated’s Global Sustainability Director Kevin Rabinovitch spoke on Energy Day - Kevin announcing a new contract to power Mars’ Mexico operations with 100% renewable power, and highlighting the value of RE100. Dalmia Cement’s Group CEO Mahendra Singhi then spoke alongside Facebook’s Bill Weihl at the World Climate Summit on November 13th, and IKEA Group’s Public Affairs Manager Katarina Maaskant spoke on EU Energy Day, November 14th.

    During the second week of COP, Microsoft and General Motors also made announcements of new investments in renewable energy. Microsoft has made its largest wind energy purchase to date - 237 MW - allowing its data center in Cheyenne, Wyoming to be powered entirely by wind power. General Motors also made its largest renewable energy purchase to date, signing a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for 50 MW of wind energy from a new wind farm being developed in Texas.

    RE100 was highlighted as a game-changing initiative in a new report by UN Global Compact on the business contribution to global climate action.

    RE100 also partnered on a major event coordinated by CAN International, which saw Chief Sustainability Officers Barry Parkin of Mars and Steve Howard of IKEA demonstrating that leading businesses are playing their part in a wider societal movement to 100% renewable energy worldwide.

    During the two weeks of COP22, RE100, our members and partners generated 18.4 million impressions of #RE100 on Twitter - creating a real buzz for the campaign. Thanks to everyone who helped by sharing and re-sharing our content, helping us to reach a much wider audience.


    EUROPE

    As the EU Commission prepares to release a review of the EU Renewable Energy Directive and Market Design Initiative, expected later this week, a new RE100 report backed by members BT Group, IKEA Group, Google, Nestlé, Royal DSM and Unilever calls for EU energy policy to prioritize renewables. The report was picked up by a number of media outlets including CleanTechnica and EurActiv.  Damian Ryan, Acting CEO at The Climate Group, which leads RE100 in partnership with CDP, said: “More companies than ever before are committed to bold climate action because it makes business sense. But to ensure that many more are able to reach 100% renewable power, governments at all levels need to set or raise the ambition of long-term supportive policies.”


    DATES FOR YOUR DIARIES

    November 29: Breakfast event with Nick Hurd, London, UK, 08:00 - 10.30hrs - Organised by Here Now together with RE100 and Maitland Green, this event with Nick Hurd, UK Minister of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is designed to showcase and grow the UK’s network of local authorities committed to 100% clean energy - inspired by the success of RE100. Speakers from Marks & Spencer and Land Securities will share their own journeys towards 100% renewable power. Attendance is by invitation only.

    December 15, RE100 knowledge sharing webinars - Tata Motors’ renewable energy journey, 16:00hrs-17:00hrs IST (Indian participants) or 11:30-12:30hrs CET (International participants)- Tata Motors will share its experiences of adapting its business model to incorporate more renewable energy in its electricity mix, as well as sourcing renewable energy via open access, onsite installations, and third party procurement. The automobile company will also share the challenges it is experiencing, for example regulatory bottlenecks. Speakers TBC. 

    January 14-15, 2017: IRENA General Assembly, Abu Dhabi, UAE - There will be a session dedicated to corporate sourcing of renewables at the IRENA General Assembly, and a small number of speaker slots will be open to RE100 members. 

    January 16-19, 2017: Launch of RE100 Annual Report/ World Future Energy Summit, Abu Dhabi, UAE - We are working on our 2017 RE100 Annual Report, to coincide with the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi. This year we will be taking a closer look at regional trends and the strategies that companies are using to journey to 100% renewable power. 

    REVISED DATE: February 2, 2017: ‘Powering a cleaner future: Unlocking business demand for renewables in Europe’, Brussels, Belgium -  In the context of the development of the new EU Renewable Energy Directive and Market Design Initiative, this event - co-hosted by RE100 and Google - will highlight to policymakers and other stakeholders the high level of corporate demand for renewable power in Europe, and discuss the framework conditions required by businesses to fulfil their renewable energy ambitions. This event follows on from our recently published RE100 report which calls for key changes to EU energy policy. European Commissioner Vice President Sefcovic will attend. 

  • Blog: Swiss Re ramps up sustainable energy commitment

    Swiss Re was a founding partner of RE100 when it launched in 2014. At COP22, Swiss Re also became one of the first leading businesses to join EP100 - The Climate Group's other major corporate initiative. Here, Senior Environmental Management Specialist Lasse Wallquist blogs on the company's new dual approach.

    At COP22 The Climate Group, together with the Global Alliance for Energy Productivity, highlighted the important progress of its EP100  initiative on energy productivity. As a signatory, Swiss Re has pledged to double its energy productivity; "why?" you might ask. Well, because this is the basis for achieving carbon neutrality.

    As a founding partner of The Climate Group's RE100 initiative, we are already committed to becoming 100% powered by renewable electricity by 2020 - a lot of it coming from our own energy production. In 2003, we launched our Greenhouse Neutral Program and started to operate carbon neutrally. This commitment includes:

    1. building our operations as energy efficiently as possible;
    2. sourcing as much green power as possible; and
    3. buying carbon offsets for the remaining unavoidable CO2 emissions

    Staying true to the cause, in our own offices around the world we are vigorously tackling our own carbon footprint. Swiss Re Next at our headquarters in Zurich for example will consume 80% less energy per employee than our former building. We have also been installing smaller solar plants with capacities of 50-100kW on the rooftops of some of our officers in Switzerland, Italy and the UK. Just 3 weeks ago we started construction on our 2MW solar power plant at Swiss Re Americas headquarters in Armonk, New York. Ten acres of panels, ground-mounted on our property, will generate more than 60% of the campus' power requirements. 

    In the context of our extensive climate engagement, the Armonk Solar Project is an important milestone example of how we "walk the talk". It helps us to illustrate our concrete efforts for our customers, society and our employees. Given the latest political developments this is - to me personally - more important than ever. We have to constantly consider climate change risks in our business, and the need for risk-transfer solutions that help companies mitigate and adapt to climate change is growing.

    Together with RE100, and of course our products and our advocacy work, EP100 is helping us to contribute to the advancement of sustainable energy solutions.

  • Prioritize renewables in Europe to unlock consumer power - new report backed by leading businesses

    RE100 calls on EU policy makers to help companies go 100% renewable

    Priority access, ambitious targets, and transformational changes are needed from EU energy policy to help companies to meet their European electricity needs with renewables, shows a new report backed by leading businesses.

    The report comes as the EU Commission prepares to release a review of the EU Renewable Energy Directive and Market Design Initiative, expected late November. Earlier this week media reports said that a leak of the Winter Package showed it could subsidise fossil fuels and undermine renewable energy.

    The report is written by independent global think tank E3G on behalf of RE100; a global, collaborative initiative of influential businesses committed to 100% renewable power across their operations, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP. RE100 members such as BT, IKEA Group, Google, Nestlé, Royal DSM and Unilever all contributed their experiences.

    It sets out policy measures that would give companies easier access to renewable power, providing greater control over energy costs and long-term business stability. It also argues that all EU member states must play their part in achieving the collective 27% by 2030 renewable energy target, and makes the case for continued priority dispatch for renewables and enforceable prosumer rights.

    There are 83 members of RE100 as of COP22, including global companies like Apple, BMW, and Starbucks. 43 of these have reported to CDP electricity use in one or more of 32 European countries – representing demand for over 18TWh of renewable electricity across the continent.

    Damian Ryan, Acting CEO at The Climate Group, said: “More companies than ever before are committed to bold climate action because it makes business sense. But to ensure that many more are able to reach 100% renewable power, governments at all levels need to set or raise the ambition of long-term supportive policies. The Climate Group wants to help to drive practical solutions that will unlock much-needed low carbon investment to deliver a prosperous, zero-emissions economy.”

    Simon Skillings, the report author and a Senior Associate at E3G, said: “Renewable energy is the future and if the European Union wants to retain its competitive edge it must unleash its potential before it’s too late. That means making it cheap and easy to procure renewable electricity to empower its energy consumers.”

    Rob Williams, Head of Energy Supply, BT, said: “Using renewable energy makes strong business sense and is a clear, simple and effective way for industry to take real action for a sustainable future. At BT we’re proud to be one of the original members of RE100, and believe business, governments and individuals should all do what they can. The Renewable Energy Directive is a key opportunity for the EU to make this business imperative a reality, with bigger scale and faster speed.”

    Michael Terrell, Head of Energy Policy and Markets, Google, said: "Google is one of the world’s leading technology companies with more than 9,000 employees in Europe.  Google’s commitment to sustainability is core to our business and we have a company-wide goal to power 100% of our operations from renewable energy. We believe the EU market has been important to the growth of renewable energy globally and we support the continuation of policy efforts that empower customers and drive even greater clean energy deployment in Europe."

    John Harris, Investment Manager – Renewable Energy, IKEA Group, said: “Whether companies purchase renewable electricity or want to generate renewable power themselves, we are all looking to EU policy to support us in reaching our target of 100% renewable power. Legislative frameworks are needed to allow more businesses, and consumers, to invest in renewables.”

    Ward Mosmuller, Director of EU Affairs at Royal DSM, said: “The new EU Renewable Energy Directive must ensure that wind and solar power are well-promoted, and that biomass is used sustainably to produce chemicals and advanced biofuels. Bio-based materials find applications in everyday products such as transport fuels, paints and packaging, but these markets are currently dominated by relatively cheap and less sustainable, fossil fuel-based materials. Sustainably sourced bio-based materials could make considerable contributions to the transition to a renewable low-carbon economy.”

    Thomas Lingard, Climate Advocacy & Sustainability Strategy Director, Unilever, said: “To scale the benefits of renewable energy we need both business action and policy evolution.  As more and more leading businesses actively look to source 100% renewable energy, we need a Renewable Energy Directive that supports, not holds back these ambitions.” 

    This is part of ongoing work by RE100 to help overcome the barriers to achieving 100% renewable power. The recommendations outlined in this report are intended to make a positive contribution to the ongoing policy development process. 

  • General Motors makes largest ever purchase of renewable energy

    General Motors has made its largest renewable energy purchase to date by signing a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for energy from a new wind farm in Texas. The automotive giant will purchase one third of the power produced by the wind farm – the equivalent electricity needed to power 16 of its US facilities.

    The PPA is for a 150 megawatt wind farm in development at Cactus Flats in Texas, by Renewable Energy Systems (RES), of which GM will purchase 50 megawatts. Expected to come online in the first half of 2018, the addition of this wind farm will mean that 6% of GM’s global electricity use will come from renewables.

    “GM’s commitment to renewable energy is helping transform the way electricity produced, distributed and consumed around the world, and we’re doing it in a way that makes our company and communities stronger,” said Rob Threlkeld, Global Manager of Renewable Energy.

    “These renewable energy investments drive down greenhouse gas emissions, reduce our dependence on finite resources, and help keep our air and water clean. Investing in Texas wind energy is an important step on a journey that will see clean, renewable sources account for 100% of GM’s global energy footprint by 2050.”

    This announcement comes just weeks after GM joined RE100, and publicly committed to powering its global operations with renewable energy by 2050. In addition to an anticipated 114 MW of wind power, GM hosts a total of 24 solar installations at its facilities around the world.

    Amy Davidsen, The Climate Group’s Executive Director, North America said: “It’s fantastic to see General Motors putting words into action so soon after their joining RE100. GM has already saved millions of dollars by using renewable energy – going 100% renewable makes business sense.”

    Read more on why GM has committed to take climate action in our exclusive interview with David Tulauskas, Director of Sustainability.

     

  • News from COP22: global leaders call for transition to 100% renewable energy

    Global leaders from governments, business and the UN have gathered at a high-level meeting at COP22, in support of a transition to 100% renewable energy worldwide to achieve the climate goals of the Paris Agreement.

    The meeting was hosted by the Moroccan Presidency of COP22 and the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), a coalition of 47 governments, to assess how a global transition to 100% renewable energy would help to limit global warming to 1.5°C degrees above pre-industrial levels.

    Supported by the UN Development Programme and Sustainable Energy for All, with The Climate Group and RE100 as contributing partners, the meeting included participants from the governments of Morocco, Ethiopia, Costa Rica, the City of Oslo, the Australian Capital Territory, Sumba Islands; as well as civil society actors, and RE100 members Mars and IKEA.

    Salaheddine Mezouar, COP22 President, opened the event saying: “Renewable energies do not only mitigate our impact on climate change but open the way to new models of sustainable development with new investments, new industries and new jobs."

    The meeting was unprecedented in the international climate process, gathering leaders to showcase significant support for the 100% renewable energy transition.

    Wael Hmaidan, Executive Director, Climate Action Network (CAN), a network of 1,100 non-governmental organizations that helped facilitate the discussions, said: “This is a very strong message we are sending out today,” “It is clear that we are all heading to a renewable energy future, the question is how fast.”

    A Climate TV interview with Jeff Seabright, Chief Sustainability Officer, Unilever, featured in a video produced for the event. 

     

    Barry Parkin, Chief Sustainability & Health and Wellbeing Officer, Mars, Incorporated called for stakeholders to scale-up cooperation and collaboration to combat climate change. He emphasized the key role of the private sector in advancing global climate action at this crucial moment in political and economic history.

    Mars was the first US business to join the RE100 campaign of global corporates committed to 100% renewable power, which is run by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP. The company has recently signed a contract to buy wind power in Mexico and earlier this year, following a similar UK announcement earlier this year.

    Steve Howard, CSO, IKEA, a founding member of RE100, was a also key speaker at the meeting and highlighted the company’s journey towards 100% renewables by 2020 as an example to other corporates.

    IKEA, which has installed almost 700,000 solar panels on its stores and distribution centers worldwide, announced plans for a solar installation at its Midwest distribution center under construction in Joliet, Illinois in the US. Installation will begin in Spring 2017, with completion expected in Autumn 2017 and it will be the largest rooftop array in the state. The project will make IKEA owner of three of the state’s largest solar rooftop installations, with its arrays in the Chicago-area at IKEA stores in Bolingbrook and Schaumburg.

    Damian Ryan, Acting CEO at The Climate Group, said: “I am optimistic about the momentum we are seeing. 30 leading companies have joined RE100 so far this year. Together, the current membership of 83 businesses is creating demand for more than 100 terawatt hours of renewable electricity – ­ more than enough to power Morocco three times over.

    He continued: "But if we’re going to see hundreds of thousands of companies setting and delivering on ambitious energy goals in the years to come, every leading corporate must become a compelling advocate of renewable energy.”

  • Blog: keeping Microsoft on course to build a greener, more responsible cloud

    As the second week of COP22 gets underway, Microsoft has announced its Cheyenne datacenter will now be powered entirely by wind energy. Here, President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith blogs on the company's progress.

    Our lives, our cities and our world are rapidly transforming with the rise of cloud technology. And as the adoption of the cloud accelerates, so does the electrical consumption of the datacenters that fuel this new era. At Microsoft, we recognize that our responsibilities as a leading cloud services provider require that we transform the way we power the cloud.

    That’s why we are announcing our largest wind energy purchase yet — 237 megawatts of wind energy — that will allow our datacenter in Cheyenne, Wyoming to be powered entirely by wind power. We’ve also structured the purchase and partnered with the local utility in novel ways to make it easier and more affordable for cities and states to move to a cleaner energy grid. And, we’re making our datacenters' backup generators available to the local grid, boosting reliability while keeping prices low for all ratepayers.

    Meeting our energy goals

    This investment in wind energy keeps us on pace to meet the energy goals we set last spring. We announced earlier this year that roughly 44% of the electricity consumed by Microsoft’s datacenters comes from wind, solar and hydropower, and we committed to raising this to 50% by 2018 and to 60% by early in the next decade.

    Today’s purchases involve two important partnerships. We have procured 178MW from the Bloom Wind Project in Kansas through Allianz Risk Transfer (ART) to help bring this new project online. We’ve also partnered with Black Hills Corp. to purchase wind power from the 59MW Happy Jack and Silver Sage wind farms in Wyoming. The combined output of the Bloom and Happy Jack/Silver Sage projects will produce enough energy on an annual basis to cover the energy used at the datacenter.

    These latest purchases bring Microsoft’s total purchase of wind energy in the U.S. to more than 500MW, which is in addition to the energy Microsoft purchases from the grid that comes from wind, solar and hydropower sources in the markets where we operate.

    New solutions help make the grid greener

    Benefits from these latest wind deals extend well beyond Microsoft’s own facilities. They are good for the utilities, the environment and local ratepayers.

    Microsoft today becomes the first buyer to participate in ART’s efficient and cost-effective finance structuring of wind generation projects. This structure offers a new model to enable faster adoption of renewables. It does so by lowering costs, reducing risks and improving certainty. By partnering with ART to deliver this new financial deal structure, we hope to help serve as a model that spurs other markets to accelerate the rate at which wind and solar energy projects come online.

    Today’s announcement also represents another form of innovation.

    Traditionally, when presented with a constraint on the system relating to reliability, load growth or the introduction of intermittent generation, a utility had one option: build new infrastructure, such as new substations, power plants or transmission lines. This ordinarily means higher costs to ratepayers. However, Microsoft envisions a future where it and other customers bring their own assets to utilities, whether new renewables, energy storage or even cloud technologies that optimize customer usage patterns, to help create a lower-cost, more efficient and cleaner energy grid.

    In this case, Black Hills Energy was faced with the potential need to build a new plant in Cheyenne. Instead, Microsoft approached Black Hills Energy with an innovative new solution to deliver reliability without additional costs for ratepayers. Microsoft and Black Hills Energy established a new tariff, available to all eligible customers, that lets the utility use our datacenter’s backup generators as a secondary resource for the entire grid. Unlike traditional backup generators that run on diesel fuel, these natural gas turbines offer a more efficient solution and, more importantly, ensure the utility avoids building a new power plant.

    This is a small step toward a future where other customer-sited resources may help make the grid more efficient, reliable and capable of integrating intermittent energy sources like wind and solar. And as we recently demonstrated in our pilot with Agder Energi in Norway, this future will be enabled by the application of cloud technologies that  enable utilities to visualize and optimize resources, providing the foundation for a low carbon energy future.

    Creating a cloud for global good

    Innovation and sustainability go hand in hand. We’re thinking differently about our datacenters and how we can build and operate them in a more sustainable way. And the innovations we’re piloting in this deal are not only good for business, but also good for local communities and the environment as well.

    We’re focused on building a cloud that serves the broader good, a cloud that is trusted, inclusive and responsible. That means thinking beyond our own operations and working with partners to accelerate the pace of clean energy and build a greener grid for all, while keeping costs low for customers and ratepayers. By thinking creatively about our energy needs and the assets at our datacenters, we’re able to deliver an innovative solution in Wyoming that does just that — and serves as a model from which we all can learn.

    As well as purchasing wind power and generating solar power, Microsoft offsets the remainder of its electricity use by purchasing renewable energy credits, meaning that it has already met its RE100 commitment to 100% renewable electricity. Find out more in our interview with Rob Bernard, Microsoft's Chief Environmental Strategist.

    For more about Microsoft's sustainability work, visit Microsoft Environment.

     

  • Winds of change in Mexico for Mars, as the company announces new investment

    Mars, Incorporated will achieve 100% renewable electricity in Mexico where it has signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for a new wind project.

    The wind farm, a new partnership between Mars, Vive Energia and Envision, will generate the equivalent electricity required to power Mars’ five sites in Mexico, and is expected to drive a greenhouse gas emissions reduction of over 25,000 tons of CO2-e when it goes online in 2017.

    The news comes on Energy Day at COP22 in Marrakech, where global leaders are convening a year on from the historic Paris Agreement. The global confectionary company couples this announcement with an call on the business community to accelerate action on climate change.

    Barry Parkin, Chief Sustainability & Health and Wellbeing Officer, said “This is an important moment in global political and economic history, and we absolutely must come together to solve the immense challenges facing the planet. Climate change, water scarcity and deforestation are serious threats to society. It is imperative that global businesses, like Mars, do their part to face down those threats.”

    Mars was amongst the first companies to join RE100, setting a target to power its entire global operations with 100% renewable electricity by 2040. The company is demonstrating progress against this goal – this wind farm will be the third major new wind project for the business in three years.

    “It’s fantastic to see Mars progressing internationally – this latest announcement is another piece in the jigsaw for achieving its goal of 100% renewable energy globally by 2040,” said Damian Ryan, Acting CEO of The Climate Group.

    “The move will also help to develop a growing renewables market in Mexico. It sends a clear signal of support to the Yucatan government that demand for renewables is rising, and that there’s an alternative to using polluting fossil fuels in this environmentally sensitive area.”

    Also today, RE100 welcomes two new members; Dalmia Cement and Helvetia. Both are committed to 100% renewable power for their global operations. 

  • Leading companies pledge to go 100% renewable and 'use better energy better'

    Leading companies Dalmia Cement and Helvetia have today commited to 100% renewable power and joined RE100 - a global, collaborative initiative of influential businesses working to massively increase demand for, and delivery of, renewable energy. RE100 is led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP.

    The news comes on Energy Day at COP22 in Marrakech, where world governments and non-state actors are gathered to increase ambition and action on climate change.

    It is a week to the day that the landmark Paris Agreement entered into force, and more businesses than ever before are committing to bold actions, to help ensure that global warming stays well below two degrees.

    Going 100% renewable

    The new additions to RE100 take the total number of members to 83, and the total demand for renewable electricity being created to over 100 TWh – more than enough to power Morocco three times over.

    Mahendra Singhi, Group CEO and Whole Time Director at Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Limited, said: “Being one of the greenest cement companies in the world, we are committed to decarbonizing our operations in a way that makes business sense. We are scaling up our ambition to make a long term transition to 100% renewable power, achieving a fourfold increase in the percentage of renewable energy in our electricity consumption by 2030.”

    Highlighting the importance of corporate action, Dr. Philipp Gmür, CEO of Helvetia Holding, said: "The consequences of climate change are diverse and directly affect the insurance industry. With our risk competence, financial strength and long-term investment perspective, we can effectively support the transition to a low carbon society. However fighting climate change always starts with ourselves. That's why our Group committed to procure 100% renewable electricity."

    The newcomers were welcomed by Damian Ryan, Acting CEO of The Climate Group: “Right now, we’re seeing greater corporate action on climate than ever before, thanks to the leadership of the world’s most influential companies."

    He added: “But to deliver net-zero emissions economies and keep global warming well below two degrees, we’ve got to go further still. Businesses have enormous influencing power over their suppliers, customers, and peers - they need to look vertically along their supply chains and encourage others to act. And governments at all levels must implement supportive policies – most urgently carbon pricing.”

    Energy Day

    The new members of RE100 were announced at Energy Day by EP100 Advisory Board member Rachel Kyte, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and CEO of SEforALL.

    Energy Day is one of twelve thematic days comprising the UNFCCC’s Global Climate Action Agenda, convened under the leadership of the high-level champions, H.E. Minister Hakima El Haité, and Ambassador Laurence Tubiana.

    RE100 members Mars and Formula E will be speaking at today’s event, and sharing their experiences of working towards 100% renewable power.

    Taking a dual approach

    Also today, (re)insurance company Swiss Re - a founding member of RE100 - has committed to doubling its energy productivity through EP100, a global effort by The Climate Group, in partnership with the Global Alliance for Energy Productivity, to help companies maximize the economic benefits of every unit of energy they consume.

    RE100 and EP100 are designed to compliment each other and provide the least-cost decarbonization pathway for business. Dalmia Cement and Swiss Re are the first companies to sign up to both – Dalmia Cement joined EP100 at Climate Week NYC in September, while Swiss Re helped to set up RE100 in 2014.

    “The climate objectives agreed in Paris require nothing less than the radical decarbonisation of the global economy,” said Adnan Z. Amin, IRENA Director-General, in Marrakech. “Transitioning rapidly to a future fuelled by renewable energy, combined with improving energy efficiency, is the single most effective way to stave off catastrophic climate change while providing citizens with a better quality of life." 

    Click here to read our exclusive interview with Dalmia Cement's Group Manufacturing Head.