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Big business likes clean energy

The clean energy revolution needs to attract as many supporters as it can to deliver a sustainable global power system. Corporates are major energy consumers and are increasingly joining the growing movement calling for a transition to 100% renewable energy.

More and more they buy into the dual benefits of saving the planet and making bigger profits from doing so.

Take Starbucks, for example. In 2015, the coffee giant achieved its goal of powering its ‘global company-operated stores’ with electricity drawn from 100% renewable sources. H&M is close to joining Seattle’s biggest export and a whole of host of others are committed to pursuing this path, including Google, TelefónicaAB InBev, Apple and General Motors – to name just a few.

Today the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has launched an initiative aimed at supporting corporates continue and accelerate their good work. Answers to its global company survey questionnaire on corporate sourcing of renewables will feed into IRENA’s REmade Index report, due for release later in the year. The REmade Index will pinpoint the companies embracing renewable energy, reveal the trends and suggest what actions can be taken – at all levels – to speed up the direction of travel towards a sustainable future.

Michael Terrell, Head of Energy Policy at Google, praised IRENA’s plans.

“Since our first power purchase agreement in 2010, Google has signed 20 different renewable energy purchasing deals in five countries totaling 2.6 GW,” he said. “However, we’re not yet able to purchase renewable energy everywhere we have significant operations, as we are limited by policy and regulatory hurdles in some markets. We’re very excited that IRENA has begun this effort to take stock of policy frameworks around the world with a view to unlocking markets for corporate renewable energy sourcing.”

IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin added: “The remarkable set of commitments and actions we are seeing in the corporate sector on renewables is a clear sign that the business case for renewable energy is stronger than ever.”


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