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Atlas expands its wind portfolio by acquiring a project from Voltalia in Brazil. This acquisition follows the recent announcement by the company of its proposed Alpaca wind portfolio in Chile. With this acquisition, Atlas continues to broaden its market offering to provide clients with a full suite of clean energy solutions. 

SAO PAULO, June 14, 2022— Atlas Renewable Energy, an international renewable energy generator, acquired a wind project in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais from the French energy producer and provider Voltalia. The project, named Juramento, will have a generation capacity of 378 MW and will be composed of 63 wind turbines.

Juramento is Atlas Renewable Energy’s second wind project after the company announced the signing of a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Enel Energía Chile last month for the development of the Alpaca wind portfolio (417 MW). Unlike Alpaca, Juramento does not have a PPA and is open to any off-takers seeking renewable power in Brazil.

“With Juramento we continue to expand and diversify our product offering across all the regions where we operate,” said Luis Pita, General Manager for Atlas Renewable Energy in Brazil. “This project is currently available for any large energy consumer looking for a PPA to transition from conventional sources of energy to renewable.”

Juramento will generate 1,650 GWh per year, which is equivalent to benefiting 799,524 Brazilian families, preventing 123,750 tons of CO2 (est.) which could be compared to removing 49,500 cars from the streets of Sao Paulo. The structure of the transaction will be reviewed and finalized through Brazil’s Administrative Council of Economic Defense (CADE) in the upcoming days.

About Atlas Renewable Energy 

Atlas Renewable Energy is an international renewable energy generation company that has been developing, financing, constructing, and operating renewable energy projects throughout the Americas since early 2017. Atlas Renewable Energy includes an experienced team with the longest track record in the renewable energy industry in Latin America. The company is recognized for its high standards in the development, construction, and operation of large-scale projects. 

Atlas Renewable Energy’s growth is focused on the most stable markets in the region, using its proven expertise in development, marketing, and structuring to accelerate the transformation to clean energy. By actively engaging with the community and stakeholders at the heart of its strategy, the company works every day to deliver a cleaner future.

Hydro Rein, Atlas Renewable Energy and ALBRAS are forming a joint venture to develop, build and operate a self-production project through a solar plant, which will be located in Paracatú, in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, with a planned total installed capacity of 438 MW. The project will supply long-term renewable power to Albras’ primary aluminum plant. 

Hydro Rein and Atlas Renewable Energy are forming a joint venture to develop and build the Boa Sorte solar plant, which will be located in Paracatú, in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, with a planned total installed capacity of 438 MW. The project will supply long-term renewable power to Albras’ primary aluminum plant. 

The construction of the Boa Sorte solar plant is planned to start in Q4 of 2022, and operations are planned to start in Q4 2023.  Total investments are estimated at USD 320 million (100% basis). The project has been submitted to the competition authority (CADE) for clearance.   

Albras within the scope of the self-production project has signed a US dollar-denominated PPA (power purchase agreement) with Boa Sorte for an annual supply of 815 GWh from 2025 to 2044. The agreement covers 12% of Albras’ annual power consumption. 

The Albras primary aluminum plant is located in the Brazilian state of Pará and is a joint venture between Hydro and NAAC (Nippon Amazon Aluminium Co. Ltd.). Albras is the largest producer of primary aluminum in Brazil with an annual capacity of 460,000 tons and supplies both domestic and international markets. 

The Boa Sorte solar plant will contain more than 800,000 bifacial modules, which will provide enough energy to avoid the emission of 61,500 tons of CO2 annually.  

About Atlas Renewable Energy 

Atlas Renewable Energy is a renewable energy generation company that has been developing, financing, constructing, and operating renewable energy projects throughout the Americas since early 2017. Atlas Renewable Energy includes an experienced team with the longest track record in the solar energy industry in Latin America. The company is recognized for its high standards in the development, construction, and operation of large-scale projects. 

Atlas Renewable Energy is part of the Energy Fund IV, raised by Actis, one of the leading private equity investors in the energy sector. Atlas Renewable Energy’s growth is focused on the most stable markets in the region, using its proven expertise in development, marketing, and structuring to accelerate the transformation to clean energy. By actively engaging with the community and stakeholders at the heart of its strategy, the company works every day to deliver a cleaner future. 

About Hydro Rein 

Hydro Rein was established in 2021 as part of Hydro’s strategy to grow in renewables. The company aims at becoming the preferred supplier of renewable power and other energy solutions for industrial clients. 

Hydro Rein has a significant pipeline of wind and solar projects in Brazil and the Nordics for long-term power supply to Hydro and other industrial offtakers. Hydro Rein is also developing a range of energy solutions to assist industries with the management and optimization of its energy consumption and storage behind-the-meter.  

The solar plant, which is already in operation, is located in the commune of María Elena, Antofagasta Region, Chile, and was built with bifacial technology. The plant has a total capacity of 244 MWp and will provide clean energy to the grid. It has a long-term power purchase agreement with Engie Energía Chile. The project will contribute to the goals of the Chilean government’s decarbonization plan.

Santiago, March 22, 2022. Atlas Renewable Energy marks a new milestone on the road to the implementation of clean energy in Chile, with the operation of one of the largest solar plants in the country. Sol del Desierto is located in the commune of María Elena, Antofagasta Region, and has a total capacity of 244 MWp. With 582,930 solar panels spread over 479 hectares, the plant will generate 714 GWh annually. The solar project is an integral part of Chile’s Ministry of Energy’s decarbonization plan, which seeks to retire and/or convert half of the coal-fired power plants by 2025.

The project, which has already started operations, has a long-term solar power purchase agreement (PPA) between Atlas Renewable Energy and Engie Energía Chile, agreeing to supply 550 GWh/year of solar photovoltaic energy for a period of 15 years. The plant’s generation enables the supply of clean energy to 345,198 homes.

Sol del Desierto will avoid 368 thousand tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to taking more than 47 thousand vehicles out of circulation per year. The solar park also stands out for its efficiency. It was developed with bifacial technology, which allows energy to be obtained from the back and front faces of each of its solar modules.

An innovative project at an international level

The company’s general manager for Chile, Alfredo Solar, explains that “at Atlas Renewable Energy we develop our projects with a strong commitment to the environment, the surroundings, and to inclusion. That is why Sol del Desierto stands out not only for its contribution to clean energy but also for the care of the surrounding nature, the conservation of archaeological sites, and above all for having placed special focus on the inclusion of the female workforce in its construction”.

Thus, the development of the plant fostered social and environmental responsibility programs, especially highlighting the work of Atlas and its employees with the community of Maria Elena, through various initiatives aimed at promoting diversity, inclusion, and local participation in the project.

One of the most outstanding projects was the “We are part of the same energy” program, which provided technical skills training in the assembly of solar modules and electricity to 66 women neighbors of the commune so that they could have access to opt for jobs within the construction of the plant as well as for other projects being built in the area. Thanks to this program, to which the contractors participated, the construction of Sol del Desierto was able to add 135 women in different operational and supervisory jobs, elevating female representation in the construction of a solar project from a traditional 2% to 15%.

In addition, due to its commitment to the environment and respect for nature and the communities, Atlas Renewable Energy developed a series of initiatives to protect the local culture and the environment. One of these was a plan to protect a series of heritage road traces, trails, and railroad lines that were in use during Chile’s saltpeter boom. In addition, 42 objects were collected that testify to the daily life of that era, which are being studied in Santiago and will later be transferred to the Museum of Natural History in Antofagasta. In addition, a program for the rescue, relocation, and monitoring of lizards living near Sol del Desierto was executed. This with the objective of protecting these reptiles prior to the construction of the plant.

Investment plans in Chile

Chile is one of the countries where a relevant growth of the industry is projected in the coming years, due to the decarbonization policy adopted by the government and the growing demand for clean and low-cost sources for the supply of large private consumers such as the mining industry. Atlas Renewable Energy is betting heavily on this market, focusing on technologies such as wind, solar, and storage.

In just a few years, Atlas has developed projects in Chile with a clear focus on the long term, both with its commercial partners and at the level of supply to regulated customers. In the country, the company sums a total of 441 MW, and in the region, a total of 2,268 MW of contracted projects across Chile, Mexico, Brazil, and Uruguay, which contribute to the energy transformation of Latin America toward cleaner sources. The company expects to continue consolidating its presence in the countries where it already operates and expands into other regions with innovative and sustainable energy projects.

About Atlas Renewable Energy

Atlas Renewable Energy is a renewable energy generation company that has been developing, financing, constructing, and operating renewable energy projects under long-term contracts throughout the Americas since early 2017. Atlas Renewable Energy includes an experienced team with the longest track record in the solar energy industry in Latin America. The company is recognized for its high standards in the development, construction, and operation of large-scale projects.

Atlas Renewable Energy is part of the Energy Fund IV, raised by Actis, one of the leading private equity investors in the energy sector. Atlas Renewable Energy’s growth is focused on the most stable markets in the region, using its proven expertise in development, marketing, and structuring to accelerate the transformation to clean energy. By actively engaging with the community and stakeholders at the heart of its strategy, the company works every day to deliver a cleaner future.

To learn more about Atlas Renewable Energy, visit www.atlasrenewableenergy.com

The global population is expected to increase by nearly a third, or by 2 billion people, by 2050. With the food production chain among the greatest contributors to global warming, feeding the world without overwhelming the planet has become an urgent imperative. Today, as an increasing number of companies and countries take up the climate change challenge, and consumers begin to demand sustainable products, the food industry is changing – fast. 

Many brands are putting in the work on health and wellbeing, creating healthier products with the sustainable sourcing of raw materials. Meanwhile, a focus on human and labor rights in the supply chain has seen companies join initiatives such as Fairtrade to ensure that those working to produce the food we eat do so in safe conditions and are paid a fair wage. Cutting water usage and reducing waste impact has also become a major priority, with many companies bringing products on the market with recyclable packaging. 

But without tackling the big energy usage and emissions elephant in the room, none of these efforts will have a meaningful impact on the future of our planet.  

From the production of crops, forestry, meat and fish products to food storage and processing, transport and distribution and food preparation, the agri-food value chain today consumes 30% of the world’s available energy and accounts for as much as a fifth of all global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. As the population grows and food requirements go up, a solution must be found that reduces the use of fossil fuels while still reaching food productivity targets.

Fortunately, leading companies in the sector, from retailers to agro-food processors, are taking steps to make this happen, by making the shift towards more sustainable, renewable energy sources.

From retailer Walmart’s commitment to source 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2035, to the work of global confectionery producer Mars, which has already converted several of its operations to 100% renewable energy, and fruit and vegetable producer Dole’s pledge to achieve zero fossil-based plastic packaging by 2025 and net zero carbon emissions in all of its operations by 2030, companies across the food value chain are taking their responsibilities seriously.

But it is not just the large household names that can make a difference. In recent years, consumers around the world are increasingly aware of the environmental impact of the brands they buy from, and this includes food and beverage companies. According to the Harvard Business Review “products that had a sustainability claim on-pack accounted for 16.6% of the market in 2018, up from 14.3% in 2013, and delivered nearly US$114bn in sales. Most importantly, products marketed as sustainable grew 5.6 times faster than those that were not.” The study adds that consumers are now “actively buying more environmentally friendly products,” and some are even willing to pay a premium for food and beverage products that follow sustainable business practices. What’s more, the environmental practices of the food industry are under constant watch from governments and NGOs, due to their potential impact.

Tackling their carbon footprint, alongside other SDG-linked objectives, is vital for companies of all sizes that want to keep market share and contribute to a sustainable future.

The renewable energy opportunity 

In recent years, solar power purchase agreements (PPA) in the commercial and industrial sectors have made an enormous contribution to the growth of renewable energy. Last year, corporations purchased a record 23.7GW of clean power through long-term agreements, despite the devastation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and a global recession.

For companies in the food sector, solar PPAs are especially useful, since the energy demand from process heating and cooling, pumping and facility ventilation, and lighting is higher during daylight hours – even in facilities that operate 24/7.

While other renewable energy sources have also been used by the sector – such as the conversion of biomass into energy – they are not free of emissions. Processing organic waste into biofuel is not only an expensive and complex process, but it also produces greenhouse gases from combustion, so while biomass power might be a renewable source, it doesn’t tackle the emissions problem.

By signing a corporate solar PPA, a food company can reduce energy expenses and greenhouse gas emissions simultaneously, without affecting monthly cash flow. 

Of course, companies within the sector can also purchase their own solar power systems, but this requires capital that could be used to invest into expanding production capacity, innovating new products, or entering new markets. With a solar PPA, food companies can use the capital saved to improve sustainability elsewhere within their business, from boosting energy efficiency to upgrading equipment.

With a corporate PPA, companies can also access another type of savings that are not evident upfront. When food production companies obtain their power from the grid, they are subject to tariff increases from energy companies – and with wholesale energy prices reaching multi-year highs in several markets, many are feeling the pinch. A PPA clearly establishes the price of the electricity for the duration of the contract, locking in certainty at a time when companies are facing extreme market volatility.

Solar PPAs not only offer a reduction of energy expenses; they provide an opportunity for food companies to become more environmentally responsible as they step up to the challenge of feeding an extra 2 billion people in the coming years. 

How Atlas can help

Without a shift to renewable energy, there is no sustainable way for businesses within the food production sector to keep up with increased demand. Feeding the world without destroying the planet in the process is one of the most important issues of our time, and companies in the sector must act now – both in making their internal operations more sustainable as well as demanding that the suppliers they buy from do so too

Atlas Renewable Energy was conceived with sustainability at its core. It develops, builds, finances, and operates clean energy projects across the Americas that enable companies to power their operations sustainably.

With robust experience handling long-term renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) to renewable energy certificates (RECs), Atlas helps large energy consumers across industries make the shift to green energy and manage their transition to net-zero emissions. 

To find out more about Atlas Renewable Energy’s approach and how it can help your company meet its sustainability goals, contact us at contacto@atlasren.com.

In partnership with Castleberry Media, we are committed to taking care of our planet, therefore, this content is responsible with the environment.*

The loan for the construction of the self-production photovoltaic plant was secured through Brazil’s Northeastern Bank’s Northeastern Constitutional Financing Fund. 

Sao Paulo, Feb. 17, 2022 – Atlas Renewable Energy, a global renewable energy generator, has secured a R$407 Million (approximately US$76 Million) loan from Brazil’s Northeastern Bank’s Northeastern Constitutional Financing Fund for the construction of the Lar do Sol – Casablanca II solar plant, which will be located in Pirapora, State of Minas Gerais, Brazil. The self-production plant will help power Unipar to produce chlorine for the treatment of water for over 60 million people.

Atlas Renewable Energy will be the main investor and operator, and will partner with Unipar, who will co-invest.

“Projects like these are great examples of long-term relationships between a renewable energy generator, a financer and a client,” said Luis Pita, General Manager for Atlas Renewable Energy in Brazil. “We are very proud that Unipar and BNB recognize Atlas’ capabilities and track-record in this industry to select us as their partner to build and operate large scale renewable energy projects and implement social and environmental programs for the benefit of the communities that will surround this project.”

“The financing for renewable energy projects stands out among the support policies of Banco do Nordeste do Brasil SA. The Institution is the largest regional development bank in Latin America and stands out from the rest due to its developmental mission focused on generating employment and income in its area of operation,” said Superintendent of Banco do Nordeste de Brasil Diego Rocha Batista. “In addition to having adequate conditions for the sector, the credit program is part of the bank’s environmental sustainability actions. The completion of another financing with Atlas Renewable Energy in Brazil reinforces the commitment to the sector and recognizes the entrepreneurial group as an excellent partner in the region.”

The Lar do Sol – Casablanca II Solar Plant, which will occupy about 700 hectares, will have an installed capacity of 239MWp with 460,000 solar panels. The plant’s yearly energy generation will be the equivalent of supplying energy to about 261,662 households, according to the average consumption of a Brazilian family. Moreover, the plant will avoid approximately 40,500 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year, which is equivalent to removing 16,200 vehicles from the streets of Sao Paulo.

Apart from powering Unipar’s production of chlorine and chlorides, the plant is set to hire about 1,200 local employees during the peak construction activity and it will also implement Atlas’ female workforce program “We are all part of the same energy”. With this, Lar do Sol – Casablanca II will be adhering to at least 5 of the UNs’ SDGs (#5: Gender Equality, #6: Clean Water and Sanitation, #8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, #10 Reduced Inequalities and #12: Responsible Consumption and Production).

About Atlas Renewable Energy

Atlas Renewable Energy is a renewable energy generation company that develops, builds, and operates renewable energy projects with long-term contracts across the Americas. The current company portfolio is 2.3 GW of contracted projects in development, construction, or operational stages, and aims to expand by an additional 4GW in the next years.

Launched in 2017, Atlas Renewable Energy includes an experienced team with the longest track record in the solar energy industry in Latin America. The company is recognized for its high standards in the development, construction, and operation of large-scale projects.

Atlas Renewable Energy is part of the Energy Fund IV, founded by Actis, a leading private equity investor in the energy sector. Atlas Renewable Energy’s growth is focused on the leading emerging markets and economies, using its proven development, commercialization, and structuring know-how to accelerate the transformation toward clean energy. By actively engaging with the community and stakeholders at the center of its project strategy, the company works every day to provide a cleaner future.

To know more about Atlas Renewable Energy, visit: www.AtlasRenewableEnergy.com

SEAL Awards recognizes Atlas Renewable Energy with its Business Sustainability Award in the Environmental Initiatives Category

MIAMI, FL, Dec. 23, 2021 – Atlas Renewable Energy, a global renewable energy generation company, has been recognized as SEAL Awards’ Business Sustainability winner under the Environmental Initiative Award Category. Atlas was recognized for its environmental activity to preserve and protect the Howler Monkey species near its 444MW photovoltaic project La Pimienta, located in Mexico’s municipality of Carmen in the state of Campeche.

The program consists of three main environmental benefits including the conservation of 300 hectares of secondary vegetation of the evergreen forest patches in the area, the creation of biological corridors to connect the forest patches that surround the solar plant, and the conservation of the Black Howler Monkey Habitat, which is an endangered species that has been red-listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUNC).

“Helping preserve biodiversity and improve local species’ habitats near our renewable energy projects is of utmost importance and this is always taken into consideration in the design phase of a project,” said Eddaly Cuesta, ESG Manager for Colombia and Mexico at Atlas Renewable Energy. “Seeing this program develop from a basic idea to a program with tangible results is very fulfilling from both a personal and professional perspective. Everything was possible thanks to the great leadership within Atlas, which understands that protecting and preserving biodiversity is an essential part of the development of our projects.”

The environmental initiative aligns with Atlas’ ESG pillar for biodiversity protection which intends to help protect and maintain environments and species near our renewable energy projects. With this, Atlas aims to motivate others within the industry and foster even more commitment toward the preservation and conservation of species and habitats. Within this pillar, Atlas has executed reforestation activities, donated seedlings, held workshops for environmental education, and has helped toward the conservation of different species across Chile, Brazil, and Mexico.

“We have a commitment as clean energy generators to provide power and to do so as sustainably as possible. Taking care of the ecosystems in which we operate is a priority for Atlas, not because it is required but because it’s the right thing to do. That’s why we often go above and beyond local regulations and do more than what is expected in this sense. I’m very proud of what Atlas has achieved, and the support from the other divisions within the company, such as EPC and Development, which have been fundamental in the materialization of this program”, said Maria Jose Cortes, Head of ESG at Atlas Renewable Energy. “Thank you SEAL Awards for this recognition and thank you to our trusted partners such as BIOS, ERM, Ecology Institute AC, and IDB Invest for being such an important element during the development and execution of this initiative.”

The first phase of the project, which consisted of the relocation of individual howler monkeys and the creation of corridors to connect forest patches, is well underway. Currently, the program is moving into phase two, which consists of monitoring the Black Howler monkey population for the next couple of years to ensure their wellbeing, executing reforestation actions and preserving the forest patches that continue to be connected by the biological corridors.

“The environmental merits of renewable energy are consistent and obvious,” said Matt Harney, Founder of SEAL Awards.  “Our judging panel found Atlas’ prioritization of conservation and biodiversity in its La Pimienta Solar Project to be unique and exemplary. We encourage all renewable energy developers to model this conservation-centric approach.”

About Atlas Renewable Energy

Atlas Renewable Energy is a renewable energy generation company that develops, builds, and operates renewable energy projects with long-term contracts across the Americas. The current company portfolio is 2.2GW of contracted projects in development, construction, or operational stages, and aims to expand by an additional 4GW in the next years.

Launched in early 2017, Atlas Renewable Energy includes an experienced team with the longest track record in the solar energy industry in Latin America. The company is recognized for its high standards in the development, construction, and operation of large-scale projects.

Atlas Renewable Energy is part of the Energy Fund IV, founded by Actis, a leading private equity investor in the energy sector. Atlas Renewable Energy’s growth is focused on the leading emerging markets and economies, using its proven development, commercialization, and structuring know-how to accelerate the transformation toward clean energy. By actively engaging with the community and stakeholders at the center of its project strategy, the company works every day to provide a cleaner future.

To know more about Atlas Renewable Energy, visit: www.atlasrenewableenergy.com

Corporate sustainability has gone from being a “nice to have” to a “must-have”, as business leaders around the world start to factor in meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs.

Although the spotlight is most often on polluting industries, organizations operating within sustainable industries also have a role to play in adopting more sustainable practices across their operations.

In this deep dive, we take a look at how companies can adopt measures that generate positive changes at scale, leading to a real environmental and consumer impact.

Why sustainability is important for business

The environmental and societal benefits of a sustainable economic model are clear, and have been brought into sharp focus by Covid-19. More and more, consumers around the world are asking the companies they purchase from to do the right thing, with the EY Future Consumer Index finding they are willing to pay a premium for sustainable products and services as the post-pandemic recovery begins.

At the international level, the upcoming COP26 meeting – touted as the “most important climate meeting of our generation” – will see countries present more ambitious commitments toward net-zero emissions.

And with rising regulatory risks and the prospect of carbon taxes in several markets, it is clear that companies must embrace sustainable business models now.

To create truly transformational change, creating shared benefits for the people and the places where we operate should become the minimum expected of every company.

We believe that companies like us have a responsibility to step forward and help spearhead this trend, in a responsible way with regard for all stakeholders.

The Atlas way

Atlas Renewable Energy was conceived with sustainability at its core. Since our launch in 2017, our vision has been to accelerate the energy transition towards clean energy while driving positive change in the wider industry. For us, this meant creating a company that would positively disrupt and elevate today’s energy sector, always putting sustainability and social progress as a core pillar of our mission. This has enabled us to become one of the fastest-growing renewable energy companies while establishing meaningful, tangible commitments with the communities where we operate.

Over the past four years, however, what we mean when we talk about sustainability has evolved. For example, an initial belief in environmental impact mitigation has grown into a commitment to zero net loss of biodiversity wherever we operate.  As the conversation moves on, we believe that there is an opportunity for companies around the world to take decisive action as sustainability leaders.

Maximizing impacts

Renewable energy companies are driving the energy transition, and the environmental benefits from our activities are enormous. However, we believe that there is little point in saving carbon emissions through our solar plants without taking into account the social and governance impacts of what we do.

By adopting ESG principles of operations, companies operating within sustainable industries can provide additional value to society and better manage the risks and opportunities arising from a wider group of stakeholders – from the communities in which they operate to the workforce they employ.

At Atlas, this means taking steps to improve our own carbon footprint, including avoiding the use of paper in our offices, improving recycling schemes, and implementing measures to encourage more flexible forms of working in order to reduce emissions from commuting. We have also sought to embed and strengthen green practices in the communities where we operate. Finally, as a company focused on having a positive impact on the people we interact with and the environments we operate in, we have worked hard to strengthen diversity, inclusion, and development as a whole.

Alongside these factors, we maintain a continual focus on innovation. This increases the value and efficiency of the projects that we develop and operate. It also maximizes the value of the raw materials we use, while minimizing the overall supply of materials we need. For example, improvements to the power generation capacity of the photovoltaic panels we use will lead to a lower number of panels being used overall, reducing resource requirements and land use.

Knowledge sharing

Fortunately, companies that seek to generate far-reaching change don’t have to start from scratch. Large multinational corporations across all industrial sectors have begun to facilitate the sharing of their sustainability initiatives with their peers – and this cross-sectoral pollination of ideas means that, no matter which area a company works in, collaborating on solutions and innovations with others means they can be shared for national and international scale-up. We have recently shared our experiences in our first-ever sustainability report

Importantly, numerous frameworks exist to give companies a starting point. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. For companies wanting to advance the SDG agenda, the job starts by acting responsibly – incorporating the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact widely into strategies and operations, and understanding that good practices or innovation in one area cannot make up for doing harm in another. From there, businesses can find opportunities to contribute to the achievement of one – or several – of the goals.

In our case, we have focused on nine of the 17 SDGs. These are divided into our core SDGs which go to the heart of our business, and material SDGs that reflect our processes and mission:

As our sustainability strategy continues to develop, we will review the scope of our activities and consider whether we focus on additional SDGs beyond these nine.

IFC Performance Standards

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standards are another important framework. Devised for IFC clients, they define companies’ responsibilities for managing their environmental and social risks, and include areas including biodiversity, resettlement, labor and community support.

All our assets, as well as our new projects, comply with these standards, and we have developed external initiatives that align our activities to the needs and challenges of the communities in which we operate.

In recent years, these have included:

  • An apiculture project created to strengthen beekeeping skills near our São Pedro plant in Brazil.
  • The creation of an environmental education center and nursery garden near our Sertão Solar plant, as well as additional nursery gardens near our São Pedro plant.
  • An environmental education program and accompanying nursery garden near our Sol do Futuro plant.
  • The donation of seedlings from the Umbu Gigante native plant near our Juazeiro Solar plant, which allowed the fruit produced to act as a source of income for neighboring communities, while contributing to local biodiversity.
  • The conservation of 1,229 hectares of forest and grassland habitat to protect local species near our project being developed in Campeche, Mexico.
  • Our partnership with The Pale Blue Dot, a Mexican organization that promotes educational programs through the use of technology in schools and community centers.
  • The Atlas female workforce program, which improves local women’s access to employment, entrepreneurial opportunities and leadership positions across the corporate value chain.

By engaging with communities in this way, we have been able to work towards the implementation of more sustainable outcomes and succeed in our goal to aid the preservation of diverse ecosystems.

Pick a metric and get started

For companies beginning their sustainability journey, deciding where to begin can often be overwhelming. Over our journey, we have discovered that targeted initiatives, focused on specific audiences, create the most tangible results. For example, one of our signature focuses has been on women in the workforce. The energy industry is overwhelmingly male-dominated, with numerous barriers to access for women.

To tackle this, we have introduced various evidence-based measures, such as:

  • Neutral language: We do not use gender-specific pronouns in our job adverts or related communications. We also ensure the language used is balanced to increase the appeal of each position and reduce the chance of missing out on high-caliber applicants.
  • Equal weighting of qualifications: We recognize the qualifications of every candidate, regardless of the institution or country in which qualifications or experience is attained.
  • Promoting access to under-represented groups: Where candidates hold similar or equal qualifications and experience, we will also consider whether any candidate is from an under-represented group.
  • Gender equity: We consider at least one female applicant within the final stage of an application process. To achieve this, we work to ensure that our job adverts do not include gendered language that may act as a disincentive for potential female applicants.

As a result, since 2017, we have more than doubled the proportion of women working in our company to 40%. This has moved us far above the energy industry average, and we are now aiming for full parity at 50%. Our focus on women applies just as much outside of Atlas as inside it, and in 2020 we launched our female workforce program “We are all part of the same energy”, which focuses on the communities where we operate. This initiative was created specifically to improve local women’s access to training on technical skills, new employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, and their leadership potential in corporate value chains.

Making a difference

Global ESG challenges, from climate, water and food crises to inequality and discrimination, are in need of solutions that the private sector can deliver. With sustainability firmly on the global agenda, no company – not even one operating in a climate-positive industry – can afford to become complacent about its activities. But with numerous frameworks available and the potential for peer-to-peer collaboration and knowledge sharing, we believe that generating sustainable change at scale is not only possible but inevitable.

In partnership with Castleberry Media, we are committed to taking care of our planet, therefore, this content is responsible with the environment.*

As a young company, Atlas Renewable Energy wants to lead our sector in terms of gender balance, diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I). We’re pushing to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, and change attitudes – both in our industry and in the communities where we operate. But achieving this means getting our own organizational culture right. In this interview, our Head of People and Communications, Marcela Pizzi, explains how we’re doing this. 

Q: What led you to center DE&I within Atlas’s organizational culture? 

A: When we first started back in 2017, we were based out of Chile with projects in Brazil and plans to work in Mexico. Working within different regions poses several challenges, the differences in languages being one of the most obvious. In this context, our first major decision was to make sure that Atlas felt like one, integrated company. 

In order to achieve this we had to clearly define, between our CEO and the rest of the leadership team, what our main values and our purpose would be. The most fundamental idea we had, the one that really defines our overall purpose, is that we want Atlas to be a force for good. 

Q: How do you define being a force for good? 

A: This involves looking at every layer of your organization through many different lenses. Being a force for good means that you have a positive impact on your environment – on one hand, this applies literally, since we work in the field of renewable energy – but on the other, we also want to have a positive impact in a social sense, on our community, on the lives of our employees and their families. 

For example, when we were going over the type of benefit and compensation policies that we would offer, we once again came back to the idea of making Atlas feel like one, integrated company. This meant that the benefits we wanted to offer would be the same regardless of location. In order to offer something truly beneficial, we looked at the best practices across all the countries we worked in and shaped our policies accordingly. That’s just one of the ways in which we have addressed DE&I.

Along the way, we noticed that we had naturally created the conditions to generate diversity, and from that point, we actively worked to create inclusivity. In a way, I would argue that inclusivity is the most important element. 

Q: How so? 

A: Diversity is something that can come about in a very superficial sense, as a way to meet quotas. Inclusivity, on the other hand, requires you to make an effort to integrate, in a very structural sense, the values that your company wants to support. 

For example, back when we were shaping our benefits policies, we noticed that out of all of the countries we worked in, Chile offered the best practices in terms of parental leave policies. We were having these conversations as our company was taking shape, and we were measuring our overall indicators, like the nationalities, ages and genders of our employees. 

In doing so, we noticed that out of the 23 people that made up the company in 2017, only 11% were women. Basically, that was me and our lawyer. On top of which, both she and I were in roles that can be considered typically female positions, so to speak. Of course, at this point, you can almost hear the same, tired conversation playing out, the one that excuses these situations by claiming that there are simply not enough women who are interested in this field, or who don’t have the qualifications. 

Q: How did you address that? 

A: We made the conscious decision to generate the type of conditions within our company structure that would present Atlas as an attractive employment option for women. So, gender equality was the first area we tackled with regard to inclusivity. 

Q: Specifically, in terms of recruitment, what measures did you apply? 

One of the most direct measures we took was requesting recruiters to find variety within candidates, starting with the requisite that at least one woman be included in their selection. Of course, this approach slowly evolved, as our company evolved. To the point where, now, we have a blind application policy, which means no indicators whatsoever to identify an applicant according to gender, age, nationality, or other markers. 

These types of measures are ongoing efforts. Beyond gender diversity, we also wanted to ensure that there would be enough representation of individuals from different regions, from different backgrounds, and so on. So, finding applicants with a diverse range of characteristics is the type of mandatory requirement that our recruiters need to meet. 

Q: What does your workforce look like now? 

A: We’ve built up our workforce diversity starting with stronger female representation, which is now at 40% in a company with 150 employees. 

Q: You were talking previously about internal structural changes that support inclusivity. Can you talk to us a bit more about these? 

Of course. For example, when it comes to our parental leave policies, we took note of Chile and its policy of six months postpartum leave. However, Chilean law limits the compensation that employees are required to receive during those six months. Companies can choose to extend the compensation beyond that limit, or not. 

Somehow, there is a sense of fear in offering full pay for six months’ leave, assuming that people will become accustomed to receiving something for nothing. However, offering someone half-pay is limiting and stressful. 

Q: Meanwhile, women are not seen as desirable employee candidates. 

A: Exactly. So, to level the playing field, we decided to also offer paternity leave. Chile offers five days of postnatal leave for fathers. We offer one month with full salary compensation. 

Q: So, you offer both maternity leave and paternity leave? 

A: That’s right, but we actually offer more than that. We also offer a bonus of US$2,500 to all new parents. 

Underlying these monetary compensations, however, are the thought processes that led us to implement these policies. One of the issues, in general, when it comes to juggling work and parenthood, is precisely the idea that individuals simply can’t do both. At some point, employees feel like they have to choose between their careers or their family life, usually due to other costs associated with childcare. In order to allow our employees to feel secure in their decision to continue working, we also offer an additional US$300 a month, applicable once the maternity or paternity leave ends until the child is three years old. 

Q: Do your efforts extend to include other gender considerations? 

A: Definitely. We conducted various trainings within our company with regards to several topics, including gender in the workplace and focusing on new interpretations of masculinity – all of which are issues that are reflected in our broader society. As these conversations took shape, so too did our understanding of how our policies need to extend beyond traditional heterosexual relationships, and should also be inclusive of same-sex couples or even single-parent households, or for those who wish to adopt or foster. Our benefit policies with regards to maternity or paternity leave, the additional birth bonus, and the monthly childcare expense bonus, therefore, apply to all parenthood scenarios. 

Q: While all this is exemplary behavior, it does require a huge investment. How do you measure your returns on this type of investment? 

A: If we go back to our core values, that of being a force for good, we measure our success in terms of how close we come to meeting those aims. 

Beyond that, there are numerous studies that show the advantages of making this type of investment in your workforce. Extend this to society in general, and we see that the benefits of gender equality in the workforce and family policies that include the role of men in childcare are all benefits that cross over onto the next generation and beyond. 

Monetary returns are secondary since they have never been our main driver. Instead, we’ve sought to measure the extent to which we can integrate our values within our company structure. Our various training sessions on topics of diversity, sensitivity, and so on were initially voluntary but now our employees are required to attend a minimum of 16 hours of training sessions per year. 

Q: As you say, these processes have been changing and evolving since 2017 – what have been the biggest lessons learned along the way? 

A: I think the biggest lessons we learned have to do with the seriousness in which we applied our measures of diversity and inclusion. So, having many conversations to determine the type of values we wanted to support and came to the realization that these require the full participation of every single member of our company, and also the participation of any partners we choose to work with. 

If you remember, I was talking about the lack of female representation in the field of energy, which is something that we wanted to improve upon on a greater scale. So we amended our contracts to make sure that any outside partner that participates in a project with us would meet certain diversity percentages in their hired workforce. We’re talking about our engineering projects, solar power projects, and so on. 

Coming back to your question about the ways in which we measure our returns on investment into these practices, I would say that creating a name for ourselves as a company that embraces and promotes these values is definitely another way we can measure our success. This draws interest from investors who know and support what we stand for, and we are able then to generate new projects that fit into our model from the get-go. 

We’re now in a place where we’re recognized for these values, and people want to work with us because of them. 

Q: What happens if someone wants to work with Atlas, but claim to be unable to meet your diversity percentages, for example? 

A: It’s happened before. In these cases, we like to propose ways in which we can meet them, by offering training programs, for instance. We train them, our contractors hire them, and we both meet our goals. 

So, the real challenge has been to really solidify our values, and look at how to go beyond buzzwords and bring about change in a very real sense. I’ve mainly talked about gender inclusivity, I know, but there are so many other areas we’ve tried to cover. Healthcare, for instance. We offer our employees health insurance that covers dental and vision insurance, which extends to their significant others, regardless of the type of partnership they have. I only mention this because in some countries we work from, same-sex couples still don’t have equal legal recognition, but we honor all partnerships just the same. 

Q: How do you see all these efforts progressing in the future? 

A: For sure with complete participation from our employees. In the end, our company model is not one that functions by following predetermined paths. We’re looking to grow through the personal development of all the individuals that make up our company. To this aim, we have initiatives like our She Leads program. 

We also regularly conduct diversity and inclusion surveys, for instance, to make space for any groups or individuals who don’t feel represented by our policies to speak their mind. In this way, we’ve previously addressed concerns regarding topics of ageism and religion, among others. Maybe we can talk more about those some other time! 

In partnership with Castleberry Media, we are committed to taking care of our planet, therefore, this content is responsible with the environment.

The 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, is being held in the UK between October 31 and  November 12, 2021. The event, which will bring parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, will shape the direction of climate action for many years to come, and businesses need to engage. 

What is COP26?

The 26th UN global climate summit is a worldwide meeting on climate change and how nations intend to address it. It brings together the signatories of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – a convention agreed on in 1994. This year, more than 190 world leaders are expected to attend, together with tens of thousands of negotiators, government representatives, businesses and citizens for twelve days of talks. It has been labeled by Alok Sharma, this year’s COP president, as a “make or break” moment for keeping the objectives of the Paris Agreement –signed at COP21 – within reach.

While the commitments set out in the Paris Agreement were far-reaching, they do not come close to limiting global warming sufficiently to avoid runaway climate change, and the window for achieving this is closing. Every five years, Paris Agreement signatories are expected to submit new, and more ambitious nationally determined contributions (NDCs) on emissions reductions. COP26 will be the first time this happens, and hopes are that as many governments as possible submit new NDCs that will keep global warming well below the two degrees Celsius ceiling laid out at COP21, and preferably at 1.5 degrees.

Ahead of the meeting, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called on all countries to commit to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, and for the G20 countries to come forward with stronger 2030 NDCs. So far, 86 countries and the EU27 have submitted new or updated NDCs to the UNFCCC, with others pledging new targets that are yet to be submitted officially.

What are the key goals of COP26?

“Securing a brighter future for our children and future generations requires countries to take urgent action at home and abroad to turn the tide on climate change,” says the UK prime minister. “It is with ambition, courage and collaboration as we approach the crucial COP26 summit in the UK that we can seize this moment together, so we can recover cleaner, rebuild greener and restore our planet.”

To this end, the conference will aim to achieve four main objectives:

Secure global net-zero by mid-century and keep 1.5 degrees within reach

To deliver on this target, countries will need to accelerate the phase-out of fossil fuels, speed up the switch to electric vehicles, and encourage investment in renewable energies.

Adapt to protect communities and natural habitats

Climate change is already a fact of life, and at COP26 commitments will be made around protecting and restoring ecosystems, building natural disaster defenses and warning systems, and promoting resilient infrastructure and agriculture to avoid the loss of homes, livelihoods and lives.

Mobilize finance

Delivering the first two goals will require trillions of dollars in public and private sector finance. At the conference, international financial institutions, as well as developed countries, will be expected to make good on their promise to mobilize at least US$100bn in climate finance per year.

Boost collaboration

The world can only rise to the challenges of the climate crisis if everyone works together. Countries need to manage the increasing impacts of climate change on their citizens’ lives; private finance needs to fund technology and innovation, and companies need to be transparent about the risks and opportunities that climate change and the shift to a net-zero economy pose to their business.

What COP26 means for businesses

Although an ever-growing list of companies has signed up to climate change mitigation and reduction, the vast majority of corporations around the world still haven’t made official commitments to decarbonize.

With strong statements and ambitious commitments expected at COP26, it’s time for businesses to get their net-zero plans off the ground.

What’s more, the outcomes of COP26 will likely give companies certainty about the conditions in which they will be operating over the next few decades – be that carbon taxes, restrictions on fossil fuel use, or new net-zero legislation.

Acting now means that companies can gain a leading edge on what’s to come, as well as becoming part of the conversation as policies are decided. Several large companies are already doing this: in May 2020, 155 firms — with a combined market capitalization of over $2.4 trillion — signed a statement urging governments around the world to align their COVID-19 economic aid and recovery efforts with current climate science. It is now time for the rest of the corporate world to follow.

How businesses can act now

Define your path to net-zero

Companies have the opportunity to start taking ambitious climate action now with science-based emissions reduction targets. Leading companies are already proving that a 1.5°C-compliant business model is possible, and there is evidence that these companies will be best-placed to thrive as the global economy undergoes a just transition to a net-zero future by 2050.

Business Ambition for 1.5°C is a campaign led by the Science Based Targets initiative in partnership with the UN Global Compact and the We Mean Business coalition. It was launched in 2019 by a global coalition of UN agencies, business and industry leaders. It enables business leaders to publicly commit their companies to a net-zero, 1.5°C target and be recognized in the lead up to COP 26 as making a critical contribution to limiting the worst impacts of climate change.

Assess your climate risk

The near-inevitability of carbon pricing as well as growing pressure on firms to report on climate risk mean that this needs to become top of mind for companies across sectors. 

The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) provides a framework for companies to assess potential climate-related impacts using scenario analysis, effectively evaluating risks to their business, suppliers, and competitors.

Companies that don’t have a handle on their climate risk are in jeopardy: in his recent 2021 letter to CEOs, Larry Fink, BlackRock’s CEO announced that companies should disclose climate-related risks in line with the TCFD recommendations, adding that the firm would now implement a “heightened-scrutiny model” in its active portfolios as a framework for managing holdings that pose significant climate risk, including flagging holdings for a potential exit.    

Make the switch to renewable energy

Currently, over 80% of the energy used in the world comes from fossil sources, and emissions from the energy sector account for around two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions. This can’t continue.

A number of leading companies can see what is coming over the horizon and are taking steps to reposition themselves. Making the switch from polluting fossil fuels to clean energy sends a strong signal that, when it comes to fighting climate change, businesses mean business.

In July last year, Microsoft along with AP Moeller-Maersk, Danone, Mercedes-Benz, Natura & Co., Nike, Starbucks, Unilever, and Wipro created the Transform to Net Zero initiative, with the tech firm committing to develop a portfolio of 500 megawatts of solar energy projects in under-resourced communities in the US. 

Meanwhile, Google pledged in September to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2030, while Apple’s newly-launched Supplier Clean Energy Program has seen 71 manufacturing partners in 17 countries commit to 100% renewable energy for the tech giant’s production as it commits to transitioning the electricity used across its entire manufacturing supply chain to clean sources by 2030.

Furthermore, growing numbers of influential, globally recognized companies have committed to 100% renewable power as part of the RE100 initiative. 

But for the objectives of COP26 to be met, every single company around the world needs to start thinking seriously about its energy transition strategy, and take steps now to execute upon this.  

How Atlas can help

If businesses don’t keep a close eye on the issues discussed at COP26, they risk being consigned to history. COP26 will result in an increased political impetus to meet ambitious climate targets. The direction of travel is clear: the net-zero future is imperative, and companies must act now.

Atlas Renewable Energy was conceived with sustainability at its core. It develops, builds, finances, and operates clean renewable energy projects across the Americas that enable companies to power their operations sustainably.

With a range of services, from renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) to renewable energy certificates (RECs), Atlas helps large energy consumers across industries manage their transition to net-zero and track their performance against long-term environmental and emissions targets.

To find out more about Atlas Renewable Energy’s approach and how it can help bring your company in line with the objectives of COP26, please contact: contacto@atlasren.com

In partnership with Castleberry Media, we are committed to taking care of our planet, therefore, this content is responsible with the environment.

Renewable energy is now competitive with fossil fuels in many markets, and an increasing number of companies worldwide are making the switch to cleaner power. But while some businesses have excelled in their transition to green electricity, others still have some way to go.

After years of slow progress, business demand for renewable energy has now reached fever pitch. According to recent figures from the Climate Group and CDP, the international non-profit groups which run RE100 – the coalition of major businesses committed to purchasing 100% renewable electricity – companies’ demand for renewable electricity has now surpassed that of the G7 countries. 

“But many hundreds more big corporates are yet to take this relatively easy step towards net zero carbon,” said Sam Kimmins, Head of RE100 at the Climate Group in a recent statement. “To meet global climate targets, and to remain competitive in a world driven by cheap, clean electricity, it quickly needs to become the norm to power your business with renewables.”

At Atlas, we’ve seen how pioneers in various industrial sectors moving towards shifting to renewables quickly cause a ripple effect, with numerous companies swiftly following them. While one of the main driving factors behind companies’ decisions to move away from fossil fuels is to reduce the environmental impact of their business operations, our corporate clients also report bottom-line advantages, from more predictable energy costs brought about by our long-term corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs), to strengthened customer relationships and brand differentiation.

Last year, despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, research by BloombergNEF found that corporations purchased a record of 23.7GW of clean energy through PPAs, up from 20.1GW in 2019 and 13.6GW in 2018.

“More than ever before, corporations have access to affordable clean energy at a global scale. Companies no longer have an excuse for falling behind on setting and working towards a clean energy target,” said Jonas Rooze, lead sustainability analyst at BloombergNEF.

All in all, in 2020 clean energy contracts were signed by more than 130 companies, in sectors ranging from oil and gas to big tech. As more firms go green, this is not only a way to demonstrate corporate social responsibility but also to improve financial performance and reduce the carbon footprint at a time when governments are setting ever more ambitious targets to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement.

However, although some industries are leading the way in converting their energy consumption to renewable sources, others could be doing better.

Food processing and production

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the food sector accounts for around a third of the world’s total energy consumption. The two most energy-intensive activities are found within agricultural production and processing and are dependent largely on the use of fossil fuels. Reducing direct carbon emissions by moving to cleaner energy is an urgent task for the industry and one that several companies have started to take on.

In July this year, PepsiCo achieved its goal of using 100% renewable energy across all operations in Mexico, its second-largest market. This came less than a year after the company reached a similar milestone in the United States, its largest market. The company plans to source 100% renewable electricity across all of its company-owned and controlled operations by 2030, and 100% renewable electricity across its entire franchise and third-party operations by 2040. If it meets its goals, the company calculates it could reduce approximately 2.5 million tons of GHG emissions by 2040, the equivalent of taking more than half a million cars off the road for a full year.

To do this, it is employing several solutions, including PPAs that will support the development of new projects such as solar and wind farms around the world, as well as purchased renewable energy certificates (RECs).

Another company looking to use more renewable energy is Nestlé. As part of its 2050 net-zero ambition, unveiled in 2019, it has pledged to continue to ramp up its use of renewable electricity to reach 100% by 2025, up from 34.5% in 2018, and says it plans to use PPAs, green tariffs, RECs and on-site production to do so.

These companies, alongside peers such as Diageo and Mars, are taking bold steps towards helping to drive the global transition to clean power – and this looks likely to win them new customers.

More and more, people are demanding cleaner, more sustainable energy. A survey conducted in the US in 2019 by the Pew Research Center found that 77% of respondents believe that developing “alternative energy” is a more important priority right now than producing more fossil fuels in order to reduce the effects of climate change. As consumers increasingly vote with their wallets, companies that are aligned with their values are positioned to take market share from companies that don’t move with the times.

Fortunately, companies within the food industry that haven’t yet taken steps towards cleaning up their electricity use aren’t too late. The availability of sourcing models for renewable electricity has advanced significantly in recent years, and there are numerous options available for companies of all types.

Pulp and paper

The pulp and paper industry was arguably one of the most unlikely beneficiaries of the Covid-19 pandemic, experiencing skyrocketing demand amid the increased need for personal hygiene products, food packaging products, corrugated packaging for online shopping deliveries, and other paper-based materials. Like most major manufacturing operations, papermaking is an energy-intensive endeavor, and as paper-based production increases, the industry may fail to achieve its emission reduction target due to the rapid growth of greenhouse gas emissions.

In a recent report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) highlights the sector as needing “more effort” if it is to reduce its emissions. Among its recommendations are for the industry to increasingly recover and use pulp and paper production by-products such as black liquor to displace a portion of fossil fuel use.

However, simply using more biomass energy won’t be enough to turn the sector green, the report says. It calls for companies to pursue the use of other renewable energy sources, particularly for recycled production, for which natural gas tends to be employed because biomass by-products are not readily available.

Textiles and garments

The fashion industry is another sector that has an enormous opportunity to harness the power of renewables in order to drive a more sustainable future. Every stage of the textile industry’s supply chain is energy-intensive, from processing yarn, producing fabric, and fabricating textiles, to transporting and selling clothes to customers, and several major fashion brands are now looking at reducing greenhouse gas emissions by powering all their global operations with renewable energy.

As part of the global RE100 initiative, well-known brands from H&M to Nike, Burberry and Ralph Lauren have already committed to sourcing 100% of their electricity from renewable suppliers by 2050 at the latest, and some are also running programs to ensure their suppliers also reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by switching to green energy.

Kingwhale, a Taiwan-based textile mill, recently joined the RE100 initiative, pledging to achieve 100% renewable electricity by 2040, but it’s the only Asia-Pacific-based textile manufacturer to do so.

Within the garment industry, there is a growing divide between renewable energy transition pioneers and their less energy-efficient peers, and much as scandals over labor practices within textile supply chains have damaged the image of brands in recent years, companies that don’t operate more sustainably in terms of energy use and consumption risk alienating their customers.

Closing the gap

Across some of the world’s biggest industries, a clear gap is emerging between those companies that have already made progress in the energy transition, and those that are yet to take the first step. Bringing the performance of the laggards in line with the pioneers will be crucial if the objectives laid out in the Paris Agreement are to be met – but it’s also a matter of survival. In the post-Covid world, consumers are increasingly focused on the sustainability credentials of the companies they buy from, and making the switch from polluting fossil fuels to clean energy sends a strong signal that, when it comes to fighting climate change, businesses mean business.