BEIJING: RE100, a global initiative that recruits and supports major companies to use 100% renewable power across their operations, today announced a partnership with the China Renewable Energy Industries Association (CREIA) as part of a major new drive to help companies in China adopt renewable energy.
A new report published today by The Climate Group says corporate demand for renewable energy is quickly growing in China. The country is already the largest investor into the renewable energy market - 2014 alone saw an increased investment of US$89.5 billion. China’s leadership is sending a clear signal to businesses to adopt low carbon solutions that will help tackle the country’s pollution and energy challenges, as well as consolidate Chinese leadership in this market.
The report, RE100: China’s fast track to a renewable future, identifies areas of greatest growth and proven opportunities available to corporations looking to invest in clean energy. Solar PV emerges as one of the most popular, with rooftop solar projects currently offering the industrial and commercial sectors a payback period of seven to nine years and an 8% rate of return according to CREIA data.
Commenting on the partnership, Megan Tang, Vice Secretary General at CREIA, said: "China already sees the necessity for ramping up renewable energy generation. What is now emerging is the huge opportunity that businesses have to push forward this growth. The RE100 partnership between The Climate Group and CREIA provides a platform for building capacity within major Chinese businesses to address technical and financial barriers which will lead to adoption being accelerated much more efficiently.”
Emily Farnworth, RE100 Campaign Director at The Climate Group, said: “China is demonstrating leadership which will help move the Chinese and global economies in a low carbon direction that will bring benefits for businesses and policymakers alike.
“By 2020, China plans to have 100 GW of solar and 200 GW of wind installed. To meet these ambitious targets, policymakers are increasingly turning to corporations to help China transition to a low carbon economy. For instance, in 2013, the Chinese government introduced new feed-in tariffs (FITs), at both state and provincial levels, to fuel the growth of distributed solar rooftop installations.
“We know that investing into these solutions makes business sense for companies – it ensures energy security, curbs fluctuating costs and reduces their own footprint - and we are committed to supporting and celebrating those businesses in China that will now make that smart investment.”
Last month Elion Resources Group, a leading desert and urban environmental restoration business, became the first Chinese company to sign up to the campaign. The business, which has total assets of more than RMB100 billion (over US$16 billion) and is listed among the ‘Top 100 Chinese Private Enterprises’, has already financed an on-grid 110 megawatt (MW) solar PV power station and is planning a new 5,000 MW solar PV project.
Launching in May 2015 in China, RE100 is set to deliver a series of capacity-building workshops to help companies overcome the most common technical, financial and policy barriers when making the shift to clean energy.
RE100 was launched at Climate Week NYC on September 22, 2014. Sixteen companies have now joined the campaign and made a public commitment to going 100% renewable. In addition to IKEA and Nestlé, RE100 brings together BT Group, Commerzbank, Elion Resources Group, Formula E, H&M, KPN, Mars, Philips, Reed Elsevier Group, J. Sara Sarasin Bank, SAP, SGS, Swiss Re and YOOX Group.