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Wanted: Suppliers powered by clean energy

With environmental concerns and public support reaching record levels, sourcing clean power is a booming trend among leading companies - and it is spreading through supply chains as well.

With environmental concerns and public support reaching record levels, sourcing clean power is a booming trend among leading companies - and it is spreading through supply chains as well.

According to the global RE100 initiative, a group of corporations committed to using 100 per cent renewable electricity, there has been a “notable shift” in the business community towards sourcing clean power in the last year. 

25 of RE100’s 122 members have already reached the 100 per cent goal, including UK-based Marks & Spencer and Sky.

Supply chain trend

More importantly, the rise in clean electricity contracts is also filtering down through supply chains.

Over a third of RE100 members state that they are now using their purchasing power to drive greater take up of renewable energy amongst their suppliers. 

Many members have started to provide information about available options and training via webinars or workshops, while others also survey their suppliers to monitor progress.

A separate report from sustainability tracker CDP shows that the number of companies adopting ‘industry-leading’ approaches to tackling supply chain emissions has doubled since last year.

Multiple drivers

The shift is being driven by both environmental and economic considerations. Nearly 90 per cent of the companies tracked by CDP say they are driven by the economic case for renewables. 

Meanwhile, an annual poll of business leaders by PwC has revealed that one in five UK CEOs are “extremely concerned” about environmental threats to their business, compared to just seven per cent a year earlier.

With the latest UK government research showing that public support for using renewable energy is climbing to record levels year-on-year, forward-thinking businesses are doing well to capitalise on the opportunity.