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Facebook, Google Lead Initiative To Add 60GW Of Clean Energy To US Grid By 2025

Microsoft, Facebook, along with power group Invenergy, GM, Honda, Google/Alphabet and Amazon, are among the 60 companies backing a group which aims to add 60GW of clean energy and renewable power capacity to the US grid by 2025.

Four non-governmental organisations have come together to form the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA), a new coalition which aims to inspire and empower multinational companies to transform electricity systems with renewable and clean energy.

The four founding bodies include BSR (Business for Social Responsibility), Rocky Mountain Institute, World Resources Institute, and World Wildlife Fund. REBA’s published goals include increasing the amount of clean energy used by data centres, in order to shift towards a 100 percent renewable Internet.

Brian Janous, director of sustainability at Microsoft, believes it is becoming more difficult for companies, particularly smaller businesses, to find developers that offer renewable and clean energy, and the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance seeks to change that.

During a conference call last Thursday, he said: “Much of the activity so far has been in the form of PPAs and that’s an efficient way to secure renewable energy, but it’s challenging for small companies. We have a long way to go, and the only way we’re going to get there is collaboration. We need utilities to come in as aggregators and provide new opportunities.”

IT-intensive companies such as Google, Facebook and Amazon have reached renewable PPA deals and other supply agreements in the US and abroad, however the process is too daunting and complex for many businesses, according to REBA.

Hervé Touati, Managing Director of Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) commented: “More companies want to power their operations with clean energy, but navigating the path to renewables is harder than it should be. REBA works across buyers, intermediaries, and developers to provide solutions and tools to meet rapidly growing corporate demand.”

According to Facebook Director of Sustainability, Bill Weihl: “We know from our experience with initiatives like the Open Compute Project that openness and collaboration help everyone move faster, and we’re excited to work with the other founding members of REBA to help green the grid. Together we will all have a much greater impact.”

Aside from NGOs, the alliance touches 60 of the most iconic and influential companies already participating in one or more programs under the REBA umbrella. The companies are set to meet this week in Redmond, Washington, during a summit hosted at Microsoft’s corporate headquarters.

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