Greenpeace reveals which shopping destinations are leading the way with renewables!

Despite the immense forces of sun, wind and consumer demand, two thirds of Australia’s electricity comes from burning dirty coal. Coal is a leading cause of climate change and that’s why it’s so important for major companies to use only renewable energy. Just as importantly for Aussie businesses, nearly 70% of Australians want businesses to move to using only renewables to power their operations.

The retail sector is one of the more energy-intensive industries in Australia and accounts for 5% of our greenhouse gas emissions. When assessing retail brands we looked at three key areas:

  1. Making a public commitment to using 100% renewable electricity
  2. Signing a renewable power purchase agreement
  3. Installing on-site solar systems

So where does that leave our biggest brands and retailers?

The Solar Saviours

On this year’s nice list are ALDI, Coles, Bunnings, David Jones, IKEA, Kmart and Target, Officeworks, and Woolworths who have all made commitments to be fully powered by renewable electricity by or before 2030 – with some retailers committing to the switch as early as 2021! They have all installed on-site solar and many have also signed power purchase agreements that guarantee their supply of renewable electricity.

The commitments from these companies alone will see 5,137GWh of power in the grid replaced with renewable electricity, which is the equivalent to powering over 700 000 homes!

The Renewable Renegades

On our less nice list are companies that haven’t yet made the public commitment to 100% renewable electricity. This includes MYER, Harvey Norman, JB HI-FI and Metcash (parent company of IGA, Mitre10 and the Bottle-O, among others). It also includes Westfield, who’ve indicated they’re planning to make the renewable switch, but are yet to make a public commitment.

Although many of these companies have installed on-site solar, they are at risk of falling behind, having not yet signed major deals to purchase renewable electricity nor committed to flick the renewable switch.

We’re very serious about renewable electricity.

Greenpeace’s REenergise campaign works to see Australia’s biggest electricity-consuming companies make the switch to 100% renewable because, not only is it important for our environmental and climate future, it’s actually better for business. The benefits to businesses include cheaper power, happier staff and more satisfied customers – in fact 65% of Australians say they’d be more likely to buy a product from companies that use renewable energy over companies that don’t.

Large companies account for 70% of carbon emissions from electricity but a switch to renewable electricity has the potential to clean our electricity grid, create new jobs and dramatically reduce the amount of carbon pollution released into our atmosphere.

Other large-scale businesses operating in Australia that have listened to their consumers and are committed to using 100% renewable energy to power their operations include Telstra, TPG Telecom, Carlton & United Breweries, Lion, Coca Cola Amatil and all four major banks.

Find out which companies are leading the renewables race