Corporate giants target 60GW of US renewable energy
Google, Facebook and Walmart are amongst the businesses to commit to bringing more than 60GW of renewable energy online in the US through the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA).
Announced late last week (28 March), REBA has committed to creating 60GW of renewables in the US by 2025. The Alliance will seek to accelerate the uptake of clean energy in the country, as 6.2GW of corporate renewables deals were issued in 2018.
"Every enterprise—whether it's a bakery, a big-box retailer, or a data centre—should have an easy and direct path to buy clean energy. Ultimately, sourcing clean energy should be as simple as clicking a button," Google’s head of energy market strategy and REBA’s first board chair Michael Terrell said.
Launched in 2014 by NGOs the Rocky Mountain Institute, WWF, World Resources Institute, and Business for Social Responsibility, REBA consists of more than 150 energy firms and 200 corporate energy buyers.
Membership is available to non-residential energy buyers and clean energy developers. The Alliance will seek to drive more options for corporate energy purchases, ranging from procurement deals to onsite technology.
Participants of REBA, which also includes General Motors, Disney, Citi and Johnson and Johnson, account for 95% of all large-scale corporate renewable energy deals in the US to date.
New Green Deal
REBA’s 60GW commitment arrived in the same week that US senators voted unanimously to reject proposals for a national New Green Deal, that would see the US shift away from fossil fuels, to be replaced with renewable sources.
Senators voted 57-0 against the proposal, orchestrated Democratic congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, that would set out long-term legislation to transform the energy sector and grow the economy through clean energy and decarbonisation investments and job opportunities.
Despite being rejected in the US, the New Green Deal is being explored in the UK. Green Party MP Caroline Lucas and Labour’s Clive Lewis put together a Bill to draw focus on the issue of climate action – with the hope that they could begin to sow the seeds of a potential revolution across climate change legislation.
The Bill has passed to a second reading, where it will be debated on 5 April. Dubbed the Decarbonisation and Economic Strategy Bill, Lucas and Lewis presented the Bill which aims to place duties on the government to “decarbonise the economy and to eradicate inequality”. Specifically, it calls for a ten-year economic and public investment strategy “that prioritises decarbonisation, community and employee-led transition from high-carbon to low and zero-carbon industry and the eradication of inequality”.