Another corporate giant has signed up to buy U.S. wind power: Netherlands-based technology company Royal Philips has announced the company will use wind energy to offset 100% of the electricity used at it North American operations by the end of 2016.
Working with EDP Renewables North America, Philips will purchase 250,000 MWh of electricity per year over the next 15 years from the Hidalgo Wind Farm in McCook, Texas – an amount equivalent to the power used at the company's 133 North American sites.
"At Philips, our goal is simple – to positively impact people's health and well-being, while minimizing our impact on the environment. This not only means making our products more ecologically efficient, [but] also requires that we reduce the environmental impact of our operations," says Brent Shafer, CEO of Philips North America.
"Our power purchase agreement will allow a brand-new wind farm to be built in Texas," continues Shafer. "Moreover, by offsetting our North American operations with renewable energy, we will reduce the Philips global carbon footprint by 8.6 percent, support the local economy and positively impact our bottom line, demonstrating the private sector can benefit from and help drive clean energy."
Phillips says this commitment represents a major step toward its 2020 carbon neutrality ambitions recently announced at COP21 in Paris. The wind energy purchase also builds on the company's other sustainability efforts in North America, such as a 2 MW wind turbine at its lighting manufacturing facility in Fall River, Mass., and a solar farm at its Andover, Mass., campus.
Globally, Philips is a member of the RE100, a collaborative initiative of influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity. Between 2008 and 2014, Philips says it has increased its use of renewable energy from 8% to 55%.
Photo courtesy of Philips: The 2 MW turbine at the company's Fall River, Mass., campus.