Media giants Bloomberg and Sky plc announced this month that they are joining the RE100 coalition of companies committing to 100% renewable power.
RE100 bills itself as “a collaborative, global initiative of influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity, working to massively increase corporate demand for renewable energy.” As of the end of the month, RE100 boasts 56 companies from across industry, including names such as Adobe, Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Nike, and Walmart.
Announced on March 17, Bloomberg L.P., the global financial software, data, and most prominently a media company, announced that it was joining RE100, setting an ambitious target to reach 100% renewable electricity by 2025. Though this counts as the latest step in a long trend of sustainable business practices for Bloomberg, the company was only sourcing 1% of its electricity from renewable energy in 2015. Bloomberg announced in 2013 that it intended to source 35% of its electricity from renewable energy sources, and is already well on its way to accomplishing this, with 21% expected to be sourced by the end of 2017.
“Sourcing renewable electricity enables us to diversify our energy supply, reduce costs, provide a hedge against rising traditional energy costs, and helps contribute to cleaner, healthier communities,” said Curtis Ravenel, Global Head of Sustainable Business and Finance at Bloomberg. “RE100 convinced us that they had gathered a strong coalition of committed companies, dedicated to real outcomes. That’s exciting to us. Collaborating with other companies who are demonstrating that distributed clean energy makes business sense will allow all of us to have a greater impact in bringing other companies along.”
A week later Sky plc, the European entertainment company, announced it had furthered its attempts to combat climate change by setting a target to source 100% of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020 (where available). Sky already acquires most of its electricity from renewable energy sources for its UK & Ireland sites, either through on-site renewable energy sources or through renewable energy tariffs. The company now intends to stretch this goal to its sites in Italy, Germany, and Austria.
“We wanted to show leadership and whilst committing to a bold and challenging target, we wanted to also recognize the business case and show that acting responsibly, and being successful commercially go hand-in-hand,” said Fiona Ball, Head of Responsible Business at Sky. “We can demonstrate the benefit of doing the right thing and leading by example, whilst also making our energy supply more resilient.”
The Climate Group
“Bloomberg is the first US company to join RE100 post Paris and we are delighted to see their continued progress,” said Amy Davidsen, Executive Director, North America at The Climate Group, the organisation behind RE100. “The company recognizes that renewable power will help to lower costs, reduce risk and contribute to a cleaner, healthier future – a win for both business and the environment.
“There’s a huge opportunity for businesses to deliver emissions cuts via renewables and Bloomberg’s leadership is exactly what we need to inspire many more companies to make the switch to renewables, too.”
“By joining RE100 Sky is demonstrating the leading role business can play to help deliver the Paris Agreement and we hope others will follow,” added Emily Farnworth, RE100 Campaign Director at The Climate Group. “It’s great that Sky intends to encourage its landlords to switch to renewables – we know that finding renewable power solutions in rented property can pose a challenge to companies.”