Tech giant Samsung has announced that by 2020, they plan to power their U.S., Europe and China plants entirely by renewable energy sources. And they aren’t the only ones. With an increased consumer focus on sustainability, more and more companies are making the move to power their operations through renewable energy. The International Energy Agency predicts that by 2040, renewable energy would comprise 40% of global power generation. In 2017, companies signed deals that support the development of 2.8 gigawatts of new, renewable energy. To put that in perspective, that’s about equivalent to the capacity of all power plants in Iceland.
Apple has plans to build a data center in Denmark that will run solely on renewable energy, powering Apple’s online services, including the iTunes Store, App Store, iMessage, Maps and Siri for European customers. Already, Apple’s stores, offices, data centers are powered by renewable energy. T-Mobile plans to run completely on wind power by 2021, and Google is offsetting all of their operational energy through wind and solar.
In a 2017 survey of 153 major corporations, 84% said they were actively pursuing or considering purchasing renewable energy. 65% of the corporations reported that price was the largest factor in deciding to purchase renewable energy sources. Also, 57% of the companies have renewable energy targets, motivated by the need to address climate and emission goals and demonstrate leadership in their industry.
Another potential reason for the switch is because wind and solar power are easier to budget and more predictable than oil and gas.
Companies that follow sustainable business practices aren’t just helping the environment; they’re also helping their bottom line. Take Patagonia for example. In a poll, customers have stated they specifically purchase Patagonia gear because of their stance on environmental conservation. Consumers trust companies that are making the switch to renewable energy and are more likely to support them.
With increased accountability for corporations and rising concern about global warming, expect to see even more giants relying on renewable energy in the years to come.