Corporate sustainability boosts sourcing of renewables


The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has issued a whitepaper discussing renewable electricity adoption by corporates.

IRENA’s analysis includes energy efforts of some 2,410 companies, operating in more than 40 countries.

According to the whitepaper, massive reduction in renewable energy resources over the past decade and a growing demand for corporate sustainability among investors and consumers is driving an increase in renewable energy investments by companies.

Findings of the study include:

  • Corporate sourcing of renewable energy occurs in roughly a third of the world’s countries
  • Roughly one in five corporations has committed to renewable electricity targets
  • The majority of companies reporting active sourcing are head-quartered in Europe and North America, with emerging markets on the rise
  • As of early 2018, companies sourced renewable electricity in 75 countries either through power purchase agreements, utility green procurement programmes or unbundled energy attribute certificates
  • The world market for corporate sourcing of renewables in 2017 reached about 465TWh, placing it close to France’s overall electricity demand
  • Companies sourcing renewable electricity come from various sectors, demonstrating that the trend is widespread and dynamic. 200 companies reported that more 50% of the electricity they consumed was sourced from renewables; 50 companies reported a share of 100%.
  • Corporate demand for renewable electricity has the potential to drive investment in renewables and accelerate the global energy transformation
  • Although more than 50% of the analysed companies source renewable electricity, only 17% have a target in place.

IRENA provides recommendations to scale up corporate sourcing of renewable energy. These include a broader participation of companies to:

1. Establish, revise or increase their current corporate sourcing ambitions to accelerate the decarbonisation of their operations.

2. Raise their efforts to support projects that trigger additional investment in renewable energy.

3. Ensure an energy market structure that allows for direct contracting between companies and renewable energy developers.

4. Work with utilities or electricity suppliers to provide corporate renewable procurement options. Stimulate direct investments in corporate production of renewable electricity for self-consumption.

5. Support an effective system for issuing and tracking of energy attribute certificates, enabling companies to make credible renewable electricity use claims.


The whitepaper can be downloaded here…