Fortune 100 companies know investing in clean energy and cutting emissions is good for business

12 December 2012

NEW YORK: The majority of Fortune and Global 100 companies in America are setting their own clean energy and emissions reductions goals - and are way ahead of the US government in their efforts - according to a new study.

The joint report by Ceres, Calvert Investments and WWF, Power Forward: Why the World's Largest Companies are Investing in Renewable Energy, came to its conclusions after carrying out interviews with executives from some of the most profitable companies in the world, including AT&T, General Motors, HP and Walmart.

Revealing that 56% of those interviewed have set their own emissions reduction targets and 13% have set renewable energy goals, the report proves business is moving away from short-term energy to longer-term investments, such as Power Purchase Agreements and on-site clean energy projects.

But despite progress, some companies are falling behind due to barriers, which according to the report is largely owing to inconsistent policies. The report offers recommendations for US policymakers, such as:

  • Extending of the Production Tax Credit for wind energy this year
  • Adopting Renewable Portfolio Standards for all states
  • Removing policy hurdles in states that prevent companies from contracting to buy the cheapest renewable power available.

Mindy Lubber, President, Ceres commented: "When a majority of the world's largest companies are investing in clean energy, you can truly see its value. It speaks volumes that almost all of these companies set their renewable energy and greenhouse gas goals after the economic downturn, precisely because they understand the economic benefits of efficiency and renewable energy."

Bennett Freeman, Senior Vice President for Sustainability, Research and Policy, Calvert Investments said: "The world's largest companies are expanding their use of renewable energy because it makes good business sense - they see the value in diversifying their energy supply, mitigating fuel cost risk, cutting their energy-related emissions, and, in some cases, providing a physical asset with real value for the enterprise."

Evan Juska, Head of US Policy, The Climate Group said: "The economics of clean energy have changed drastically over the past few years, such as the price of solar power alone falling 75% since 2008. As this report and our campaign reiterates, companies are realizing that there is an opportunity here, not only to do the right thing, but to enhance their bottom line."

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