Apple achieves 100% renewable energy at facilities, targets suppliers next
- Apple attained its 10-year-old goal of converting all of its global facilities to be 100% reliant on renewable energy after reaching 96% a year ago, with India, Turkey, Brazil and Mexico sites now on board, the Wall Street Journal reported.
- The next step is to get its supply chain into the program, which will prove to be a much more difficult change. Apple’s 200 suppliers manufacture more than 200 million iPhones and 43 million iPads each year. So far, 23 have achieved 100% reliance.
- Apple’s Asian suppliers could be a tough sell because they don’t face the consumer, regulatory and investor pressures of the U.S.
Apple's announcement that all its facilities now run on 100% renewable energy includes all of its retail stores, offices, data centers and partner data centers, as well as its new headquarters in Cupertino, CA, which features rooftop solar panels and is one of the largest on-site solar installations in the world.
Apple is not alone. The company is a member of a collaborative called RE100, which features 131 companies (thus far) who have pledged to switch to 100% renewable energy, including heavy hitters such as IKEA, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Starbucks, eBay, Hennes & Mauritz, Microsoft and Procter & Gamble.
RE100 also stresses a compelling business case for renewables, such as greater control over energy costs, increased competitiveness, and delivery on emissions goals. Its members set a public goal to source 100% of their global electricity consumption from renewable sources by a specified year. They disclose their electricity data annually, and RE100 reports on their progress.
Renewable energy has a positive effect on the environment, but is also an important business tool. Many companies are beginning to see sustainability as a competitive edge, mainly because it's so popular with consumers. Today's consumers are very ethically conscious — they want to support companies that ethically source and use renewable energy.
Apple's initiative will not only propel the company ahead of the competition, but will also model to other companies that sustainability is not only achievable, but desirable.
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