Major businesses call for easier access to renewable energy

Companies, including Amazon, Facebook, Google and Nike, have signalled their willingness to do more to tackle climate change

  • The RE-Source Declaration calls for greater clarity and certainty on the long term ownership of Guarantees of Origin of renewable energy
  • The organisations are also asking European governments for a wide variety of procurement models and market products, from on and offsite solutions to multi-corporate renewable PPAs
  • They believe encouraging cross-border renewable energy transactions will maximise opportunities to deploy the most cost-effective renewable energy solutions
By Priyanka Shrestha
Picture of the European Union flag on solar panels and a wind turbine

Nearly 100 organisations are calling on European governments to make it easier for them to invest in and directly source renewable energy.

The companies, including Amazon, E.ON, Facebook, Google, H&M, Lightsource BP, Nike and Siemens Gamesa, have signalled their willingness to do more to tackle climate change in a declaration signed in Amsterdam today.

According to WindEurope, corporate renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) worth 6GW have already been signed in the region, with nearly 2GW contracted in 2018 alone.

Onsite corporate renewables sourcing by commercial and industrial businesses accounted for 1.7GW last year and is expected to grow “considerably” over the next five years.

The RE-Source Declaration calls for greater clarity and certainty on the long term ownership of Guarantees of Origin (GOs) for renewable energy – the RE-Source Platform is a European alliance of stakeholders representing clean energy buyers and suppliers for corporate renewable energy sourcing.

The organisations are also asking for a “wide variety” of procurement models and market products, from on and offsite solutions to multi-corporate renewable PPAs to minimise risk and maximise participation as well as enabling them to sign cross-border renewable transactions to maximise opportunities.

The call comes as more than 150 companies have committed to source 100% of their electricity from renewable sources through the RE100 initiative.

The declaration states: “As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report made clear and as the upcoming COP24 climate negotiations will reinforce, addressing climate change is an urgent global imperative and will require rapid decarbonisation of the electricity system. Corporate renewable energy purchasing can play a critical role in driving this energy transition.

“We believe corporate electricity buyers, renewable energy suppliers and policymakers have a unique opportunity to work together to help Europe achieve its climate and energy objectives by enabling new, competitively-priced renewable energy resources at a scale not otherwise achievable. We are prepared to continue leading by example and accelerate the transition to a smarter, more sustainable and more inclusive European energy system.”

Additional information

RE-Source, Europe’s platform for corporate renewable energy sourcing, aims to increase the number of active corporates from 100 to 100,000. The massive potential represented by corporate renewable PPAs can only be realised via increased awareness and the removal of policy and market barriers that currently constrain the growth of renewables in many markets in Europe.

Accordingly, RE-Source calls on policymakers to help realise the full potential of renewable electricity sourcing in Europe by:

  1. Removing regulatory and administrative barriers to corporate renewable sourcing, as required by the recently enacted Renewable Energy Directive, so the early success – mainly concentrated to date in the Nordics, the Netherlands and the UK – can be replicated more broadly.
  2. Providing corporates with clarity and certainty of long-term ownership of Guarantees of Origin (GOs) from contracted supplies: Access to GOs is critical to the business case for corporate procurement.
  3. Encouraging cross-border renewable energy transactions to maximise opportunities to deploy the most cost-effective renewable energy solutions. Enablers include implementing GO systems that ensure environmental integrity, transparency, harmonised treatment and prevent double-counting.
  4. Enabling a wide variety of procurement models and market products, from on- and off-site solutions to multi-corporate renewable PPAs to minimise risks and maximise participation.

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