Large companies, including IKEA, H&M, Mars and Nestle, recently joined a group of non-governmental organizations and clean energy stakeholders to launch a multiyear initiative to encourage major businesses to commit to using 100% renewable power.
Led by The Climate Group – in partnership with CDP, the International Renewable Energy Agency and others – the RE100 campaign will showcase how companies are making the journey toward 100% renewable power. RE100 will also engage business leaders, policymakers and financial institutions to encourage their role in accelerating a clean energy future. Ultimately, the campaign's goal is that, by 2020, 100 of the world's largest businesses will have committed to 100% renewables.
Thus far, at least IKEA, Swiss Re, BT, Commerzbank, Formula E, H&M, KPN, Mars, Nestle, Philips, Reed Elsevier, J. Safra Sarasin and Yoox have all made firm commitments. Some of the companies, such as IKEA, had previously announced their renewables target.
Steve Howard, chief sustainability officer of IKEA, says, "Investing in renewable power makes complete business sense. It aligns with our corporate expectations on financial returns and our values. So far, we have generated 1,425 GWh of power from renewable sources. We plan to invest approximately EUR 1.5 billion in new renewable energy projects to meet [our] 100 percent by 2020 goal – and RE100 is a great way to tell our story."
Swiss Re says it recognizes the business opportunity of renewable energy, too. "We decided on a 100 percent renewable power approach because, as a leading wholesale provider of reinsurance and insurance, we believe that tackling climate change while meeting the energy needs of a growing and developing world is an urgent matter," explains Juerg Trueb, head of environmental and commodity markets at Swiss Re.
Ben Ferrari, The Climate Group's director of partnerships, highlights the focus for the campaign in the coming year: "We are delighted with the ambition of leading companies to go 100 percent renewable. We plan to continue to grow this group and expand our outreach in China and India over the coming year. It is an exciting time for renewable power."