Commercial, GHG Emissions, Commercial, Finance, Sourcing Renewables - May 4, 2017
Wells Fargo progresses toward 100% renewables
In addition to its external financing and investments in clean energy technologies, Wells Fargo has also been working to improve its operational efficiency on its path to utilizing 100% renewable energy.
"We have committed to purchase renewable electricity to power 100% of our global operations by the close of 2017, with a transition to long-term agreements that fund new sources of green power by 2020," the banking giant said in its 2016 interim sustainability report. That transition to more direct involvement in renewable energy procurement for operations follows a growing trend among Fortune 500 companies looking for additionality as they pursue their clean energy goals.
Wells Fargo reported that it has cut its absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 36% in 2016 compared to 2008 baseline levels. The company has a 100% renewable energy target and has been deploying energy efficiency initiatives throughout its operations in order to help it get there.
One example, according to the interim report, is illustrated by the more than 25 million square feet of LEED-certified buildings Wells Fargo operated in 2016. The company said smart irrigation and LED lighting and controls have helped lower operating costs while also decreasing its environmental footprint.
On the financing side, Wells Fargo said its activities in tax equity investing, direct leases, loans and construction financing are expanding the amount of renewable energy generated in the U.S. In fact, the company said 8% of all wind and solar energy generated in the U.S. came from projects that are either owned wholly or in part by Wells Fargo.
"We're proud to bring more renewable energy to our communities every year, and we are developing the necessary expertise to help guide customers and expand future investments in renewable energy," the company said in its report.