Solar Power at 4 Industry-Leading Corporations and What it Means for You
Renewable energy is becoming more appealing and accessible every day. Millions of homeowners are making the switch to solar energy, electric cars, and efficient appliances. People all around the world are experiencing the benefits of clean energy in their homes and communities.
Benefits range from peace of mind of knowing the earth is becoming cleaner to thousands of dollars in savings. Homeowners who go solar can experience these benefits, saving on energy bills and taking advantage of local and federal incentives like the Investment Tax Credit (ITC).
These benefits are not lost on the leaders and executives of popular corporations. In fact, some of the largest corporations in the world have turned to renewable energy resources, pledging to become more sustainable.
Here are four brands who have adopted renewable energy and made commitments toward a more sustainable future:
Amazon is one of the largest companies in the world and the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable energy. With their first solar installations in 2017, the company set a target to reach 100% renewably sourced energy by 2030. Since then, they have installed 116 solar farms and 225 on-site systems, totaling 1,113.43 MW in solar capacity. They have also moved their goal deadline to 2025. Amazon offsets about 17.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide every year.
“Our commitment to protecting the planet and limiting Amazon’s impact on the environment has led us to become the largest corporate buyer of renewable energy in the world in both 2020 and 2021. Given the growth of our business, and our mission to run 100% of Amazon’s operations on renewable energy, we aren’t slowing our renewable investments down,” said Andy Jassy, CEO of Amazon.
In 2015, Apple purchased two solar projects in Maiden, North Carolina – one 20 MW and the other 18 MW – both of which are helping power Apple today. Like other corporations, Apple does not rely solely on solar energy, but uses other renewable resources, such as wind power, to power their operations. In 2021, 1.8 billion kWh came from solar, more than half of the 2.8 billion kWh produced from all renewables combined.
The company reached 100% carbon neutrality in 2020 and currently has 987.25 MW of solar capacity. Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives said, “We consider our impact on people and the planet in everything we do. And we continue to ask ourselves how we can make our work an even greater force for good in the world.”
2022 was a great year for Target’s sustainability. Their first net-zero building was finished in California, with 1,620 rooftop panels and 1,800 carports. It is expected to produce 10% more energy than the facility needs to operate completely and has the HVAC incorporated as well to avoid using natural gas.
“This store is truly a test kitchen for some of the features that can help us as we work toward our larger goal of 100% renewable electricity,” says Rachel Swanson, the lead solar program manager. “Designing this project was intimidating at first, especially when you consider the moving target of energy consumption and all the stakeholders needed to pull it off. I’m so proud to see it come to life, and looking ahead, I’m excited to use what we learned here to help us achieve our goals and make a positive impact.”
Target’s sustainability goals began in 2015 by wanting to add rooftop solar to 500 locations by 2020. This was achieved in November of 2019, resulting in 240 new MW of solar capacity. In 2021, 52% of consumed energy was produced from renewable resources, up from 38% the previous year.
Today, the company has 515.06 MW of solar capacity installed, and they are striving to reach their goal of 100% renewable energy by 2030.
Many guests at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida have seen the field of solar panels on Disney property. From above, this array is Mickey-shaped, but it’s not the only solar power the resorts rely on, with systems owned all around the world.
Walt Disney World currently has 57 MW of operating solar capacity but is preparing to energize two new arrays in nearby counties, each 75 MW. In their first year of operation, they expect to produce over 375,000 MW of energy, powering about 40% of the park’s annual energy consumption. Disneyland Resort in California is partially powered by 1,400 solar panels that sit atop Radiator Springs Racers. These were installed in 2016 and stretch across 40,000 square feet.
In Europe, Disneyland Paris recently added over 67,000 solar panels to parking structures, one of the largest arrays in the entire continent. The array will be energized in 2023 and is expected to power about 20% of the park’s energy consumption.
Castaway Cay, Disney Cruise Line’s island in the Bahamas, is 70% powered with 4,320 panels. Hong Kong Disneyland houses the largest solar panel site in Hong Kong with over 5,000 panels, and Tokyo Disney Resort has enough solar capacity to power the Dreamlights Parade with eight arrays located around the resort.
The Walt Disney Company recently announced their goal to reach zero emissions within the next eight years. “Disney has shown a strong commitment to the environment throughout its history, and we’re excited to continue building on that legacy with new, ambitious environmental goals for 2030. We believe we can have a significant, lasting impact and make a positive difference in protecting our planet,” said Bob Chapek, former CEO.
What Does this Mean for You, as a Homeowner?
There are hundreds of companies who have implemented sustainable practices including relying on renewable resources for power – these four are only scratching the surface in commercial space. Their decreased reliance on nonrenewable resources were decisions made to not only benefit the planet, but to realize substantial savings over time. Energy and financial experts in these companies have begun working together and will continue to see decreased costs as they work towards their sustainability goals.
Switching to solar was a smart decision for these companies, and it can be a smart decision for homeowners, too! The same economic and environmental benefits are available to you with residential solar panel systems. As one of the top solar companies in the nation, we have seen thousands of homeowners personally experience the benefits of solar energy and contribute to a cleaner future. Blue Raven Solar is here to help you make the switch.
Find out how much you can save today!