US corporates and industrials (C&I) will contract 4.4GW-7.2GW of new solar and wind capacity annually through to 2030, following on from a national record of almost 8GW this year – despite Covid-19 impacts, according to a new report by IHS Markit.
Corporate-driven power purchase agreements will account for about 20% of all large-scale renewable power additions over that period, according to the researcher, depending on the extent to which they expand and fulfill their renewable ambitions.
More than any nation, the US has a growing portion of new renewable energy projects being built to meet demand coming directly from the C&I sector.
“We have now reached a tipping point for corporate sector demand for renewables,” said Anna Shpitsberg, IHS Markit’s director of global power and renewables.
“Fueled by shareholder and consumer activism, and the opportunity to hedge power costs and corporate renewable targets, companies are increasingly making the connection between a specific project and a specific facility’s power demand.”
The US represents more than 60% of the global market for corporate-driven renewables procurement.
“The US market position can be attributed, in part, to factors such as the sheet number of large US-based corporations, tax incentives, a high concentration of power-intensive data centres and power market structures, and accounting standards that are more conducive to corporate procurement,” according to IHS’ latest Corporate US Renewable Procurement Outlook.
Of the 220 companies actively procuring or planning to procure renewables here, more than 160 have specific targets and over 140 of them have a 100% renewables goal by 2050.
Of the 25 large buyers that include household names such as Amazon, Apple, Bank of America, General Motors, Google, Microsoft and Starbucks, nine have already achieve 100% and another are expected to reach there by 2030.
IHS Markit defines a large corporate buyer as also having electricity usage the currently exceeds 1,000 GWh.