Companies going green in 2018

Alex Crees
By Alex Crees
For business

As Earth Day approaches, corporate giants such as Apple and Google have announced major renewable energy achievements. Apple said earlier this month its global facilities, including retail stores, offices, data centers and co-located facilities in 43 countries, are now powered with 100 percent clean energy, while Google similarly announced it now offsets all its office and data center electricity use with 100 percent renewable energy.

But these corporations aren’t the only ones making strides in clean energy this year. Read on to find out which other U.S. companies have gone green in 2018:

Campbell Soup

Campbell Soup Co. completed the installation of a 4.4-megawatt solar array at its New Jersey headquarters in March. The solar project, which consists of panels mounted to rooftops, on a reclaimed brownfield and on canopies built over employee parking lots, will generate about 5 million kilowatt hours per year – the equivalent of 20 percent of the campus’ annual energy usage.

Visa

Visa pledged in February to use 100 percent renewable energy across global operations by the end of 2019. “We are proud to play a role in driving the adoption of renewable energy,” Al Kelly, Visa’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “For Visa, this announcement is an example of our longstanding commitment to operate as a responsible, ethical and sustainable company, while fostering economic growth.”

AT&T

The telecom giant announced in February it will buy 520 megawatts of wind power from two farms in Texas and Oklahoma – the equivalent of powering 250,000 homes for an entire year. Scott Mair, president of AT&T operations, said the company has worked hard to reduce its carbon footprint. “We’ll stay on that path and continue to do everything we can in being good corporate citizens for sustainability,” he said.

Microsoft

In what the tech giant described as “the single largest corporate purchase of solar energy ever in the United States,” Microsoft announced plans in March to purchase 315 megawatts of energy from the Pleinmont I and Pleinmont II solar facilities under construction in Virginia. Once complete, the developments will have more than 750,000 solar panels across more than 2,000 acres. The tech company also inked its first renewable energy deals in Asia earlier this year, agreeing to purchase solar energy from Sunseap Group and Atria Power to power its operations in Singapore and Bangalore, India, respectively.

Brown-Forman

The maker of Jack Daniels, Chambord and Finlandia vodka signed a 15-year deal in February with Infinity Renewables to purchase 30 megawatts of power a year from the Solomon Forks Wind Project in Kansas. Brown-Forman claimed the deal made it the first U.S.-based spirits and wine producer to commit to a corporate power purchase agreement. The deal will help the company achieve its goal of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions 15 percent compared with 2012 levels by 2023.

T-Mobile

In February, T-Mobile announced it finalized a wind power contract with Solomon Forks Wind Project in Kansas. The Kansas farm will begin supplying power in 2019, adding to the energy the telecommunications company already receives from the Red Dirt Wind Farm in Oklahoma. “We expect to cut T-Mobile’s energy costs by around $100 million in the next 15 years thanks to this move,” said John Legere, company president and CEO. T-Mobile has committed to a goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2021.

Budweiser

Every bottle of Budweiser brewed in the U.S. will be made with renewable energy by spring of this year, the beer brewer announced in January. To mark the achievement, the brand unveiled a new symbol that will appear on every bottle and can produced with 100 percent renewable energy. According to company officials, the U.S. is the first Budweiser market to go carbon-neutral and is part of a wider effort of AB InBev, which owns Budweiser, to go fully carbon-neutral by 2025. Electricity for U.S. operations will be sourced from the Thunder Ranch Wind Farm in Oklahoma.

Nike

In January, Nike Inc. agreed to buy 86 megawatts of power produced by Avangrid’s Karankawa Wind Farm in Texas. Nike officials said the deal will allow the company to source all the power it consumes at its North American facilities from renewables. The company has a goal to source half of the electricity it consumes worldwide from renewables by 2025.

Vail Resorts

Vail Resorts Inc. announced in January it engaged with Renewable Choice Energy to help the company meet its sustainability goals, including zero net emissions by 2030, zero waste to landfill by 2030 and zero net operating impact to forests and habitat. “This is an exciting step towards our net zero emissions goal,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. “Bringing more renewable energy to the market and onto the grid is a great opportunity, and one that highlights our passion for environmental stewardship.”