August 21 (Renewables Now) - Renewables currently have a share of just around 5% in the power mix of Fortune 1000 companies and there is an “enormous opportunity” to further green their supply.
The non-renewable power demand for such corporations approaches 1,200 TWh, according to a new report by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) and Wood Mackenzie. The latter calculates that the renewable energy demand through 2030 from the US’ largest companies could reach up to 85 GW.
“Momentum is building, peer pressure is rising, and corporate renewable energy procurement practices are maturing, setting the stage for increased market participation within the Fortune 1000,” said Dan Shreve, Wood Mackenzie’s head of wind research and lead author of the “Analysis of Commercial and Industrial Wind Energy Demand in the United States” report.
Wood Mackenzie and AWEA say the market is in the early stage of a corporate renewables procurement boom. In addition to the global effort to fight climate change, this is also driven by highly competitive renewable project economics. Big companies like General Motors and Facebook have signed power purchase agreements (PPAs) for over 6 GW in 2018 alone.
For now, wind is more popular than solar energy with commercial and industrial (C&I) customers, but Shreve expects power market dynamics and the continued reduction of the cost of solar to place significant competitive pressure on wind. “A step change in turbine performance or further cost reductions will be critical for wind to compete amidst ever increasing renewables penetration,” says the researcher.