Top 5 Companies Going Solar
Thinking about the benefits of solar energy? So are a lot of the world’s largest companies. Whether the goal is to reduce carbon emissions, qualify for tax benefits, or reduce electricity bills, both companies and you benefit from renewable energy.
The world’s largest brewing company, Anheuser-Busch, is making the change to sustainable energy. The company already uses wind power to make its beers, and just announced plans to work with a solar developer to build a 2,000 acre solar farm en Pecos County, Texas.
Anheuser-Busch originally planned to have all American-made beers brewed exclusively with renewable energy by 2025, but with the solar farm’s completion in 2021, they’ll be four years ahead of schedule.
“Sustainability is our business, because we rely on crops and water in order to have our final product,” said Michel Doukeris, CEO. Other brewing companies are also working to be eco friendly - MillerCoors installed their own solar panels in 2015, which will reduce carbon emissions and water consumption by almost 700 million gallons in the next 30 years.
Walt Disney World
The most magical place in the world is also becoming greener! Walt Disney World announced a second solar plant in April, and with 270 acres, it’s twice the size of Magic Kingdom Park. The 500,000 panel and 50 megawatt farm will generate enough energy to provide up to 25% of Walt Disney World’s electricity. That’s the equivalent of “removing 10,000 cars off the road”, according to Angie Renner, Environmental Integration Director of Disney Parks
The plant will follow a smaller 22-acre solar installation built in 2016 near EPCOT shaped like Mickey Mouse. "It's been a lot easier [for companies] to be cost effective as well as to meet the goals of renewable energy," said John Giddens, director of Reedy Creek, the Walt Disney World Resort district.
"I hope everyone is as excited as we are to harness the power of the sun and about this new renewable facility that’s helping bring magic and clean energy to the Disney Resort", added Renner.
Google has also added more solar plants to support their data centers. Construction in Alabama and Tennessee began in January to build two enormous plants that will generate up to 413 megawatts, enough to supply almost 80,000 houses!
The solar parks will have 1.6 million panels total and are the largest plants ever built for Google.
Apple announced last April that they’re now completely powered by clean energy worldwide - all stores, offices, data centers, and other installations use only sustainable resources for electricity.
“We’re committed to leaving the world better than we found it. After years of hard work we’re proud to have reached this significant milestone,” said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. “We’re going to keep pushing the boundaries of what is possible with the materials in our products, the way we recycle them, our facilities and our work with suppliers to establish new creative and forward-looking sources of renewable energy because we know the future depends on it.”
Apple’s new headquarters in Cupertino, California, became the largest office to be certified LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) in the U.S. last year. The rooftop solar installation provides 17 megawatts that go to the public grid during low-use times. Now that’s a good neighbor!
Walmart’s been working to put their slogan of “Save Money. Live Better.” in practice for twelve years through solar energy - they’re constantly adding solar panels and plants to supply their stores throughout the states and Puerto Rico. In the last year, Walmart announced new solar energy projects in California, South Carolina, Illinois, Alabama, and other states, inching them closer to their 2025 goal of half their energy being supplied through renewable energy source.
"Our work in renewable energy is an ongoing process, one that we are fully committed to because the future of the environment depends on it—and our customers deserve it", wrote David Ozment, Walmart’s Energy Director.