Remember when I wrote about 13 US companies pledging investments totaling $140 billion to fight climate change?
They've now been joined by 68 more.
Ceres—the sustainable business leadership organization that works directly with 13 of the new pledgees—outlined some of the significant commitments being made under this announcement. They include:
—Best Buy promising to reduce carbon emissions at its North American facilities by 45 percent by 2020, more than doubling its previous goal.
—PG&E to invest about $3 billion a year to modernize the electric grid to better integrate distributed solar, energy storage, electric vehicles and other low-carbon technologies, as well as supporting implementation of EPA’s Clean Power Plan and providing customers with electricity that is more than 60 percent carbon-free by 2020.
—IKEA commits to produce as much renewable energy as the total energy consumed in global operations by 2020.
—Kellogg’s to further reduce energy and GHG emissions by an additional 15 percent from its 2015 performance.
—L’Oreal USA commits to reduce CO2 emissions at its plants and distribution centers by 60 percent in absolute terms by 2020 (from 2005 baseline.)
All of these commitments and more are part of the White House-led American Business Act on Climate Pledge, which not only seeks significant contributions from individual companies to the fight against climate change, but is also working to leverage these commitments to create political pressure for a strong climate deal in Paris. In total, 81 companies employing over 9 million people have now signed up to the pledge. At a roundtable meeting with several CEOs today, Obama said he hope to get even more companies to join in the coming months and years. Not bad, for a bunch of anti-business, pseudo-socialist treehuggers...
The other thing worth noting about these announcements is that they are VERY near-term goals. While Toyota aiming for a fleet that's 90% fossil-fuel free by 2050 is an important and laudable goal, we also need these ambitious, short-term pushes to set the world economy moving toward a low carbon future with enough momentum to actually get us there.
Meanwhile smaller, mission-driven businesses and individuals are also stepping up our climate action and activism too. You can get involved by helping me plant some mangroves, if you'd like.