Saint-Gobain North America, one of the world’s largest building materials companies, says it has entered into a 12-year virtual power purchase agreement (vPPA) to help offset its U.S. CO2 emissions while supporting the construction of Blooming Grove Wind Farm in McLean County, Ill.
Through the vPPA with Blooming Grove Wind Farm, Saint-Gobain North America will receive renewable energy certificates (RECs) that will effectively offset CO2 emissions from the electricity that powers the company’s U.S. operations by 40%. This will result in a reduction of Saint-Gobain’s overall carbon footprint in the U.S. by 21%. Blooming Grove Wind Farm is in construction and is scheduled to be operational in late 2020.
The announcement marks the largest renewable energy deal in Saint-Gobain’s 355-year history and is a key driver in helping the company reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, a commitment announced by Pierre-André de Chalendar, chairman and CEO of Saint-Gobain.
“Today, we celebrate a significant milestone in Saint-Gobain’s three-and-a-half-century legacy of powering innovation that enhances the well-being of people around the world,” says Emmanuel Normant, vice president of sustainable development at Saint-Gobain. “I hope Saint-Gobain’s efforts can serve as a model for others who are looking to make strategic investments in the future of our planet while moving their company’s business objectives forward.”
Saint-Gobain North America has contracted 120 MW of the 250 MW wind farm, which was developed by Invenergy, a privately held global developer and operator of sustainable energy solutions that has developed more than 150 projects across four continents.
Saint-Gobain North America’s vPPA with Blooming Grove Wind Farm sets parameters around the company’s exposure to volatility within the energy market. To develop this unique structure, Saint-Gobain North America worked with Edison Energy, a leading energy advisor that consults with the largest commercial, industrial and institutional energy users.
Saint-Gobain will continue to power its more than 147 manufacturing facilities across the U.S. through the purchase of electricity from local utility grids.
Photo: From Saint-Gobain’s website, “At Saint-Gobain, we are committed to ensuring that our activities, our employees and our partners are jointly involved in building a more sustainable and equitable world.”