Renewable energy is a hot topic at the moment and why wouldn’t it be, our planet is at risk and we need to do everything we can to save it. It’s not surprising then that many companies have an aim to achieve 100% renewable energy in the near future. Facebook, Ikea and Coca Cola all have an aim for achieving it by the year 2020. M&S and Google have already managed to achieve 100% renewable electricity. Some companies have gone so far as to actually achieve it already- Apple, Lego and Capital One have managed to become companies which run on 100% renewable energy. An amazing fete for any organisation.
You can find a full list of those companies who have committed to 100% renewable energy here, through the RE100 initiative– ‘RE100 is a global corporate leadership initiative bringing together influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity.’
Companies like these are a great example to the rest of the world and businesses alike. If we focus on Apple, for example, a multi-million-pound company with offices all over the world. This achievement covers all parts of Apple’s operations spreading across 43 different countries. Not only are they committing to going entirely green, but they are making a point of gradually encouraging more of its suppliers to do the same thing. They have recently announced that nine more are using green energy, taking the total to 23. A company of this magnitude has had to work consistently and gradually to make sure its product and operations are more environmentally friendly. A key example of this includes the new Apple Park Campus, an amazingly beautiful building architecturally (as seen in the picture below) and the Headquarters of Apple Inc. It has solar panels all the way around its huge roof and it utilises biogas and fuels cells to ensure that the giant donut-shaped complex is entirely green. They have also introduced similar projects around the world, including in China where it has built wind and solar projects to counteract the emissions that are generated via its manufacturing processes.
So, what does it mean to be 100% renewable or ‘going green’, it basically means becoming carbon or climate neutral. Which leads to the question, what is carbon and climate neutrality? In a few words, having a net zero carbon footprint, which refers to achieving net zero carbon dioxide emissions by balancing carbon emissions with carbon removal or simply eliminating carbon emissions altogether.
It’s used in the context of carbon dioxide-releasing processes associated with transportation, energy production, and industrial processes.
Carbon-neutral status is achieved in two ways:
- Balancing carbon dioxide emissions with carbon removal, beyond natural processes. Often through carbon offsetting, or the process of removing or isolating carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to make up for emissions elsewhere. Some carbon-neutral fuels work in much the same way by being made from carbon dioxide, either already offset or simply as part of natural processes, despite producing carbon emissions themselves. Significantly more extreme forms of carbon dioxide removal may also be used.
- Simply eliminating carbon emissions altogether through the use of renewable energy that does not produce carbon emissions at all (such as wind and solar power). Carbon projects and emissions trading are often used to reduce carbon emissions, and carbon dioxide can sometimes even be prevented from entering the atmosphere entirely.
At Utility Team we can help you set and reach realistic achievable targets/milestones by adopting energy saving technologies that reduce your carbon footprint along with improving conditions for your staff. We can collectively push the boundaries to facilitate a creative a forward-thinking strategy through the delivery of renewable energy and recycling options. Contact us to find out more, email email@example.com or call 02476 997901
Article written by Nick Weedon, Energy Solutions Manager.