Nowadays, a large mix of tech companies, Fortune 500’s, and local businesses across the country are working to fight climate change. By adopting more sustainable practices, investing in renewable energy such as wind and solar, and reducing their global carbon footprints, these companies are greatly benefiting our environment and helping to ensure a cleaner future. Here’s a list of 16 companies fighting climate change today:
Amazon Web Services prides themselves on their renewable energy program, where they have been building a number of wind and solar projects to offset their global infrastructure footprint. In September 2016, they announced they will build their largest wind project to date, which will provide about 90,000 homes with power through 1,000,000 MWh capacity and 100 wind turbines.
They also announced the construction of five more solar projects, four of which have a 20 MWh capacity, and one that has 100 MWh. Their goal is to achieve 100% renewable energy usage as soon as they can.
Not only is Amazon looking to mitigate its environmental impact on a large scale, but they are working on their smaller manufacturing issues as well. For example, Amazon ships their items in their original containers in 100% recyclable packaging.
Tesla’s mission and innovation has always been centered around efficiency, both in function and in energy usage. Throughout the years, their goal was to prove that electric vehicles are better than gasoline-powered cars. Today we know this is true, and that electric cars are extremely good for the environment.
Going forward, Elon Musk is looking to expand this idea of environmental sustainability in car manufacturing by collaborating with SolarCity. This merger will combine “Tesla’s scalable Powerwall wall battery with SolarCity’s solar panels.” So, instead of charging Telsa cars with electricity from the current energy mix, they can run solely on solar energy.
Alike to Amazon, Google has been purchasing and building renewable energy projects to offset their global infrastructure footprint. They even just announced that in 2017 Google will be reaching “100% renewable energy for [their] global operations — including both [their] data centers and offices.”
The company creatively described the amount of renewable energy they have purchased as “more than twice as much as the 1.21 gigawatts it took to send Marty McFly back in time.” Today, Google is the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable power.
If you’re interested in learning more, they have published all information on the company’s sustainability programs in a public Environmental Report.
Walmart has a massive impact on the environment, given the sheer size of the company and their stores alone. Because of the scale of their impact, they are moving towards zero waste - starting with their stores in America. More than 81% of the materials that flow through their U.S. stores is being diverted from landfills, with a 90% diversion rate leading the cause in Japan and the U.K.
They are also trying to reduce their plastic usage by manufacturing water bottles that use less plastic, and transitioning from plastic bags to ones that require less waste.
The new Apple campus in Cupertino “will be the most energy-efficient building of its kind” given it will be powered by 100% renewable energy and provide 75% of its ventilation naturally. Over 95% of the material is either recycled or reused as well. The campus also features glass-only walls that allow employees to look out of both sides of the ring at the rest of the campus.
Currently, 93% of their facilities worldwide run on renewable energy as well. They are one of the larger companies helping lead the way to a cleaner future.
Facebook is a founding part of the Open Compute Platform, an industry organization that works to improve data center designs to make them more energy efficient. They work to improve the servers themselves and the buildings they are housed in. This way, companies like Facebook can approach sustainability in a more holistic and complete way.
Their campuses are also working towards having more sustainable structures. Their Menlo Park Campus has a waste diversion program, and their Facebook West campus even has etched glass, to prevent birds from crashing into the buildings, and uses healthy building materials.
7. General Motors
To date, Seventy GM plants have reached the ENERGY STAR Challenge for the automotive industry. These sites had to reduce energy intensity by 10% in five years, and most GM plants did it in less than two. Through this challenge, GM saved $33 million in energy costs and reduced 220,0000 metric tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere.
GM is the #1 automaker for voluntary carbon reductions, and the solar footprint of their facilities is as large as 104 football fields.
Microsoft is investing in new technologies like biogas and fuel cell energy to move towards a more sustainable future with innovative renewable energy. They have been 100% carbon neutral since July 2012 and continue to maintain this today.
The tech giant has even supported people in emerging nations through carbon offset community projects.
Patagonia is leading the clothing industry in a completely new direction. They have a program called “Worn Wear” that helps keep the clothing and gear in use longer by designing them to withstand more, offering a repair system, and eventually a recycle system for when they are beyond repair.
From energy use to rainwater runoff, Patagonia is always conscious of their resource usage at each of their headquarters and service center. At their headquarters, they have replaced impermeable asphalt with permeable cement so rainwater can flow through the ground and into the soil to be naturally filtered. They even have a “Drive-Less Program,” which offers monetary incentives to employees who choose more eco friendly ways of getting to work such as carpooling, biking, or alternative-fuel vehicles.
Ikea is not only working towards sustainability in its business, but it is encouraging its customers to do the same. Today, Ikea sells solar panels, and have streamlined the process for their customers, making it easier for them to invest in solar.
On the business side of things, Ikea is making sure to ethically source their wood and cotton products, given they are the most used resources in their product line. They work with the WWF to promote responsible tinder trade, and Ikea even bans any seller that provides illegally harvested wood. Since 2005, Ikea has been working with WWF to make cotton farming more sustainable, and the results were so significant that they inspired farmers in India and Pakistan to change their cultivation techniques.
11. Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente understands that those who suffer most from the effects of climate change do not have the resources to conquer its problems. They know that the companies that do have the resources must work to be sustainable and avoid a future where people cannot mitigate the effects of climate change.
To help, Kaiser is having their hospitals meet international standards of sustainable practices. All of its food is locally sourced and they are reducing their water usage by 25% per square foot in its buildings. They are also expecting to be 100% carbon net positive by 2025.
12. Fetzer Wines
Fetzer Wines, alike to Arcadia, is a Certified B Corporation, which means it is a for-profit company working to “use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems.”
They reduced their water usage by 200,000 gallons annually and the vineyard is even recognized for creating a blue heron sanctuary on their property. Fetzer became the 1st zero waste winery in 2014 and the 1st U.S. wine company to run on 100% renewable energy in 1999. They are also an Arcadia customer, where we help offset their carbon footprint month-to-month.
13. Green Sage Cafe
All three Green Sage Cafe locations in Asheville, NC are now sourcing their power from 100% renewable energy, including wind and solar. They are an Arcadia customer as well, so they match a portion of their electricity usage with clean energy from American wind farms.
They also source all of their ingredients locally, which strengthens the local economy as well as saves the fuel that would have been used to transport the ingredients from further away.
14. Homegrown Sustainable Sandwiches
Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shops are located in both Washington State and California. The company started their own Homegrown Sprouting farms for food and education in those regions as well. All of their products are organic and grown without any hormones, and they are looking to become zero waste very soon.
15. Nest Bedding
Nest Bedding makes organic, natural bedding. They are also an Arcadia customer and match their electricity usage with wind energy. Nest Bedding tries to make their bedding as affordable as possible so everyone can support eco friendly home goods.
Of course, we pride ourselves on making clean energy more affordable and accessible for all Americans. Help us ensure a cleaner energy future and sign up for wind energy today at no extra cost.