Jul 2020 4 mins read
In just a few months, the impact that remote working and social isolation have had on carbon emissions has been astonishing. From cleaner air to clearer water, unobstructed views and empowered wildlife, the plummet of air pollution during the past few months has resulted in the biggest ever carbon reduction on record. In fact, the International Energy Agency (IEA) say the world will use 6% less energy this year - the equivalent to losing the entire energy demand of India.
This unexpected glimpse into a greener future as a result of COVID-19 has re-energised our climate efforts and the pressure to achieve net-zero is only set to heighten. While our economy is crying out for business as usual, we’ve been presented with a unique opportunity by the government to “Build Back Better” and take decisive action to decarbonise instead of slipping into old, non-sustainable habits.
One solution is power purchase agreements (PPAs), which can not only support your business with its carbon neutrality goals, but also clearly demonstrate your sustainability commitments to customers and stakeholders while ensuring long-term budget certainty.
Some of the world’s largest asset managers have already warned companies that they’ll struggle to access capital if they don’t decarbonise. And many are in agreement that the government should only be bailing out companies showing a true commitment to cutting their carbon emissions in line with government targets. So much so, that Frans Timmermans, vice president of the European Commission has stated that “all COVID-19 recovery investment should go towards commerce that either helps reduce carbon emissions or promotes digital business.”
It’s possible that businesses will be judged individually based on their sustainability trajectory, rather than their current state. But when it comes to making concrete climate commitments, rather than just empty claims, how do you put your money where your mouth is?
Entering into a PPA not only reveals your long-term environmental conservation efforts in a way that’s durable and achievable, but it also provides greater transparency for your stakeholders on your business energy efficiency and low carbon readiness.
Plus, obtaining REGO certificates as a result of corporate PPAs verifies that your energy was generated from renewable sources - boosting both your public perception and your business value. Ultimately, helping your business to secure future investment.
During a time of financial instability and operational uncertainty, PPAs can also help to give businesses long-term visibility and revenue certainty. Without the typical constraints and fluctuations of the volatile energy market, PPAs give companies the security and foresight to future-proof jobs and adjust to the new normal, while making significant savings on their energy bills.
With ongoing economic turbulence comes a greater need for businesses to enhance their bankability. The long-term visibility and stability that comes with a corporate PPA can subsequently make a huge difference to companies requiring investment in the wake of COVID-19.
Consumers are taking a harder line than ever on which corporations they align themselves with. With the scrutiny firmly fixed on sustainability, lip service and greenwashing simply won’t cut it. Businesses will be expected to have an authentic and transparent energy strategy in place in order to gain customer buy-in.
Harnessing the dramatic decline of Co2 emissions during the coronavirus pandemic, BrewDog has declared their ‘mission to become the world's most sustainable drinks company’, by entering into a deal that will see all their bars’ electricity supply come from wind turbines.
Twitter, on the other hand, has announced a permanent remote-working business model, which will drastically reduce their operational costs as well as their carbon emissions.
While these examples may seem like bold and unfeasible moves for most businesses, major corporations including Tesco are implementing PPAs as part of their net-zero agenda. By procuring renewable electricity through PPAs and generating energy on-site, they are reducing carbon emissions and exemplifying their sustainability with REGO certificates.
There’s no better time for businesses to consider PPAs as part of their energy strategy and commitment to carbon-reduction. Depending on your energy demands, there are various options available to help your company work towards net-zero with zero upfront costs and minimum hassle.
Use our business energy calculator to discover your perfect PPA and take positive steps towards your carbon-neutral goals.