Apple successfully pushes suppliers to use more renewable energy

Apple suppliers more than doubled their clean power in the past year, company says announced Today. The renewable energy projects they support have prevented 13.9 million tons of carbon dioxide pollution from entering the atmosphere. That has almost the same impact as taking 3 million cars off the road for a year, the company says.

It is part of Apple’s efforts to contain climate change by being completely carbon neutral by 2030. The climate promise the company created in 2020 set it on track to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 75 percent this decade and find ways to tackle remaining climate pollution.

unlike Other companies Having only promised to eliminate pollution from their direct operations and electricity consumption, Apple has gone a step further by pledging to reduce emissions from its supply chains and reduce the use of the products by its customers. That will be by far the biggest increase for the company, as those indirect emissions are good most of its carbon footprint

In addition to having a bigger impact than just focusing on the company’s operations, eliminating emissions from the supply chain has an added bonus of pushing other companies to clean up their actions. Apple publishes an annual list of its top suppliers, who get about 98 percent of the money Apple spends on materials, manufacturing and assembly. About 60 percent of those major suppliers are on Apple’s list of companies committed to making Apple products that use “100 percent clean electricity” worldwide. Dozens more smaller suppliers have made similar ones pledges

However, claims about using “100 percent clean electricity” are not so straightforward. Apple announced in 2018 that it had started using 100 percent renewable energy, but that doesn’t mean its stores and offices have always run on wind and solar energy. Most grids simply don’t have enough renewable energy capacity and aren’t wired to deliver it to one customer all the time.

So companies often buy Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) from energy suppliers, which represent the environmental benefits of renewable energy projects, to more or less offset their dirty electricity usage. Apple buys these credits, and so do its suppliers. In 2021, just under 80 percent of renewable energy “purchasing” from its suppliers went to buying renewable energy from suppliers. RECs made up another 8 percent. Another 10 percent of procurement efforts went into direct investment in new renewable energy projects. And 3 percent went to renewable electricity that was actually generated on site at a supplier.

Apple’s Supplier Clean Energy Program bought credits equal to 360,000 tons of carbon emissions to address “a small increase in its carbon footprint,” it said in the Updating on the program.


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