Corporate clean energy purchases hit record in 2021, says BNEF


Corporate clean energy purchases hit record in 2021, says BNEF


According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, global corporations purchased 31.1 GW of clean energy through power purchase agreements in 2021, reaching new record high. Purchases are up roughly 24% from the previous record year of 25.1 GW in 2020.

In 2021, more than 137 companies from 32 different countries publicly announced clean energy contracts. BNEF’s data shows that the Americas accounted for two-thirds of the activity. Among the 20.3 GW of PPAs announced, the United States leads the way with 17 GW. The virtual PPA continues to dominate the US market, with 12 GW of transactions.

Besides, with huge years from Spain and the Nordics, Europe witnessed a record 8.7 GW of transactions announced. In Asia, on the other hand, only 2 GW of PPAs were announced, but there were a slew of other developments. For example, legislation for a corporate PPA model was introduced in South Korea in October 2021, while clean energy certificate issuances in China and Japan reached new highs.

According to BNEF, growing affordability of renewable energy as technologies mature, as well as the potential to demonstrate sustainability pledges as public and investor demand for climate action rises, are two major reasons driving expansion.

“It's not a question of whether or not corporate renewable energy procurement will increase each year; it's a question of how much,” said Kyle Harrison, BNEF's Head of Sustainability Research. “More companies are making new sustainability commitments, renewable energy costs are falling, and regulators around the world are slowly realizing that clean energy could be a silver bullet in the private sector's decarbonization.”

In 2021, technology firms were once again the leading corporate consumers of clean energy. With 44 offsite PPAs totaling 6.2 GW in nine countries, Amazon was the top PPA buyer among IT corporations. The next two largest consumers are Microsoft and Meta, with 8.9 GW and 8 GW, respectively.

In 2021, 67 companies pledged to meet the RE100 objective, totaling 355 members from 25 different countries who commit to meet 100% of their electricity demand using renewable energy

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