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More companies than ever committed to ambitious climate action at Climate Week NYC

24 September 2019, 12:47 BST 4 min read

  • Almost 300 multinational businesses with a combined revenue of US$5.5 trillion now driving climate action on renewable power, electric transport, and smarter energy use in more than 140 markets worldwide;
  • Climate Week NYC sees biggest year yet with 20+ new signatures to international non-profit The Climate Group’s corporate leadership initiatives - nine of those in RE100;
  • Ambitious new commitments include Deutsche Telekom targeting 100% renewable electricity by 2021; 
  • But a vast global scale-up still needed – The Climate Group calls on thousands of major businesses around the world to get ready for the ‘Climate Decade’.

NEW YORK CITY: Climate Week NYC is witnessing its busiest year yet for ambitious corporate action with 20+ new commitments on cleaner, smarter energy, The Climate Group has revealed – but a vast global scale-up is still needed to deliver on the Paris Agreement and limit a global temperature rise to 1.5˚C.

Almost 300 multinationals across every major sector are now committed to action, representing US$5.5 trillion in combined revenue, with operations in more than 140 markets and more than 16 million employees – almost double the workforce of New York State.

Committing to 100% renewable electricity today

US retail giant Target Corporation, Europe’s biggest telecommunications operator Deutsche Telekom, Japanese department store chain Takashimaya, and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) are committing to source 100% renewable electricity as part of the RE100 initiative, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP.

Also signing up today are leading global outdoor advertising company JCDecaux, global professional services company Accenture, US heating and ventilation technology company Trane, and the world’s largest solar module manufacturer JinkoSolar – headquartered in China. They follow hot on the heels of the Canadian athletic apparel company lululemon, which joined RE100 on Friday.

Marking five years since The Climate Group launched RE100 at Climate Week NYC 2014, today’s pledges see the award-winning initiative surpass a 200-member milestone, driving 220 TWh of renewable electricity demand – almost enough to power Indonesia. By delivering on their goals, member companies are set to save the equivalent annual CO2 emissions of 27 US coal fired power stations.

“It’s incredibly exciting to convene so many companies leading by example on cleaner energy and transport this Climate Week NYC. From the US and Europe to India and Japan, ambitious business action is starting to accelerate market change around the world.

Helen Clarkson, Chief Executive Officer, The Climate Group

“Supportive policies are important, but the business case is clear, and Chief Financial Officers everywhere must ready themselves for this, the Climate Decade. The private sector has a vital role to play in halving global emissions by 2030 – we won’t stop pushing until thousands of companies are moving forward at pace.”

Cristina Gamboa, CEO, World Green Building Council commented: "The building and construction sector is stepping up to take climate action. The World Green Building Council global network is helping more and more business leaders and cities on the pathway to a net zero carbon future through our Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment. I’m delighted to welcome the new corporate signatories who are leading the way to transform the built environment to make healthier and more sustainable."

Target will source 100% renewable electricity across its entire operations – including more than 1,800 stores, dozens of warehouses and global offices – by 2030, with the interim goal of reaching 60% by 2025. The company is investing in projects that produce electricity through renewable resources, like solar and wind, and is on its way to installing 500 rooftop solar panels by 2020. These efforts will help Target to meet its broader climate goals and deliver on its commitment to creating a more sustainable future.

“Target puts the needs of people, communities and the planet at the center of everything we do, to help create a better tomorrow. Our climate and energy goals are important initiatives to help deliver on that promise. At Target, we’re committed to operating all our facilities with 100% renewable electricity by 2030 and are thrilled to be joining RE100 in recognition of that commitment.”

John Leisen, Vice President, Property Management, Target

One of the largest banks in Australia, ANZ has made an ambitious commitment to sourcing 100% renewable electricity by 2025. The bank is driven by its broader sustainability strategy and in part by the actions and growing expectations of its customers as they seek to manage energy price volatility. In 2017, ANZ joined a collective to source renewables via joint power purchase agreement (PPA) in Victoria. Future plans include signing additional PPAs for wind and solar energy (partnering with customers where possible), and increasing installations of onsite solar panels. The priority will be Australia and New Zealand – its largest footprint – followed by the rest of its operations.

Kate Langan, Group GM Property, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited, said, “We are committed to reducing our environmental footprint in line with our focus on environmental sustainability. Moving to 100% renewable energy for our electricity by 2025 not only makes good business sense, it is good for the planet and reflects our ongoing support for the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement.”

RE100 and EV100

Japanese department store chain operator Takashimaya is targeting 100% renewable electricity globally by 2050, including through solar power and biomass. The company will also transition its entire vehicle fleet to electric and install customer charge points at all stores in Japan, plus stores in China, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam by 2030 (where possible). Eventually, all of its charge points will provide renewable electricity.

RE100 and EP100

JinkoSolar, a world leading solar manufacturer in China, pledges to lead by example by powering its own operations with 100% renewable electricity by 2025. It will use solar energy generated by sister company JinkoPower, install solar panels on all existing factory rooftops, and build new factories in regions with access to renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, hydro. The company will also encourage its suppliers to source renewable electricity. At the same time, JinkoSolar will deploy an energy management system by 2030 and improve its energy productivity by 30% by 2025 against a 2016 baseline. To progress toward this goal, the company has signed up to the EP100 Cooling Challenge to increase the energy efficiency of its cooling operations.

“At JinkoSolar, we care as much about the sustainability of our products as we do the way we build them. Going green is our business, from the inside out, and we’re thrilled to be the world’s first solar manufacturer to be a member of RE100 and EP100 simultaneously. It makes business sense to save energy and switch to renewables. Being a responsible corporate citizen is more than just good business practice – it helps make society more sustainable and healthy.”

Kangping Chen, CEO, JinkoSolar