Anheuser-Busch meets 100% renewable energy goal four years early

Pictured: Staff at the new solar farm in Texas

The project that takes the business, which owns brands including Bud Light, to the 100% mark is a new 22MW solar project in Texas. This will officially come online by the end of June. The project was developed in partnership with Recurrent Energy and Anheuser-Busch claims it is the largest solar project for the beverage industry in the US.

In total, Anheuser-Busch has now invested in 12 renewable electricity generation projects across the US. Ten projects are located at flagship breweries, distribution centres and craft partner breweries. Aside from the solar farm in Texas, the other offsite array is the 152MW Budweiser Wind Farm at Thunder Ranch, Oklahoma, built as part of a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Enel’s Green Power Arm. Anheuser-Busch claims that it has added nearly 400MW of renewable electricity generation capacity to the grid in the US, mitigating 950,000 metric tonnes of CO2e related to energy generation from fossil fuels.

The brewer’s work has been commended by politicians in several states where renewable arrays are active, including New Hampshire and California, which is notably the US’s leading renewable generator and is striving to ensure that its energy sector generates 56% less emissions annually in 2030 than it did in 1990.

“Private industry must be a major ally in the fight to address the climate crisis if we are going to make meaningful progress as a nation,” Congressman John Garamendi of California said.

“I’m pleased that Anheuser-Busch, whose Fairfield brewery in our Congressional District is one of our largest employers, is investing in technology to brew beer using renewable energy. Their commitment to brewing in a sustainable way is incredibly laudable and is the kind of thinking and innovation we need to address the challenges that climate change creates.”

Broader progress

The news comes after Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev), Anheuser-Busch’s parent company, announced what it claims is the world’s largest corporate sustainability-linked loan to date, priced at $10.1bn.

Rates for the loan will be calculated in line with AB InBev’s progress to source 100% renewable electricity through its RE100 membership; increase recycled content in PET packaging to a majority proportion; improve water efficiency in breweries globally and to reduce emissions in line with climate science.

On the RE100 piece, AB InBev has achieved 100% renewable electricity for Budweiser in the UK as well as for Anheuser-Busch in the US. The UK milestone was met by the brewer signing a 15-year PPA with Lightsource BP. It is also set to achieve 100% renewable electricity in Europe next year, after a 10-year virtual PPA deal with BayWa.r.e.

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Sarah George  

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