Unilever achieves 100% RE ahead of 2020 goal - Smart Energy Decisions

Energy Efficiency, Commercial, Solar  -  September 16, 2019

Unilever achieves 100% RE ahead of 2020 goal

A British-Dutch consumer goods company achieved 100% renewable energy in all of its production across five continents ahead of its 2020 target, in addition to the roll-out of efficiency programs that have resulted in a reduction in total energy consumption by 28%.

Unilever, a producer of food and beverages, cleaning agents, beauty products, and personal care products, is based in London and Rotterdam and is Europe’s seventh most valuable country. The company announced Sunday that 100% of its grid electricity across production in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America comes from renewable sources. That includes factories, offices, R&D facilities, data centers, warehouses and distribution centers.

Unilever sources 38% of its renewable energy from corporate PPAs and green electricity tariffs.

The remainder of its electricity supply is linked to the purchase of RECs. Unilever’s target is to be fully carbon neutral by 2030 and currently has solar power generating renewable electricity on-site at facilities in 18 countries.

Unilever has also invested in a collection of energy efficiency programs, which contributed to a reduction in total energy consumption of 28% and halving the carbon emissions per ton of production since 2008.

"The climate emergency is one of the most urgent challenges we're all facing,” Marc Engel, chief supply chain officer at Unilever, said in a statement. “We hope that today's announcement will inspire further action elsewhere and help to prove that it is possible to combat the climate crisis and hold global warming at 1.5 Degrees Celsius. Renewable is doable."

Unilever will appear at the opening ceremony of Climate Week NYC and in the United Nations Secretary General’s Climate Action Summit where its leaders will advocate for the importance of adopting sustainability initiative and slow the rise of the global average temperature in line with the Paris Agreement.

The company also reported that the costs of these programs have been counterbalanced through mechanisms such as PPAs and have incurred no net on-costs at this point.

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