Nike heads towards 100% renewables in North America; signs major clean power agreement
Nike’s North American business will now be entirely powered by renewable energy. The sportswear giant has just signed a major agreement with a Texan windfarm to procure large amounts of clean power.
This is the sportswear giant’s second major wind energy contract with Avangrid Renewables, a subsidiary of Avangrid, a US utility company. Nike had previously signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Avangrid Renewables to power the company’s global headquarters in Beaverton and all its Oregon-centered production sites.
“With this agreement, Nike will source 100% renewable energy across our owned or operated facilities in North America,” said Hannah Jones, Nike’s Chief Sustainability Officer and Vice President of its Innovation Accelerator.
Nike has committed to power all its facilities worldwide with 100% renewable energy by 2025. After this latest news, Nike will have delivered on more than 50 percent of its commitment seven years early.
“Investing in renewable energy is good for athletes, the planet and for business and we will continue to drive collaboration to accelerate a low carbon growth economy”, Jones added.
Nike is a signatory to RE100, a group of some of the world’s most influential global corporations committed to 100 percent renewable energy, with deadlines set by individual companies.
Other leading US companies like Walmart, Johnson & Johnson and Starbucks have also signed on, committing to achieve 100 per cent renewable electricity. Goldman Sachs aims to be 100 per cent renewable by 2020 and Johnson & Johnson by 2050.
Alongside the RE100, Nike has joined various other global sustainability initiatives in its continued bid to set a vision for a low-carbon, closed-loop future.
Late last year, it became a signatory to ‘We Are Still In’, a declaration of dissent against U.S. president Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. More than 900 companies, including Tesla, Google and Microsoft joined former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg in pledging to achieve, and exceed, the original commitment.
Nike also joined other major apparel companies, including Gap and Levi Strauss, last year in committing to set emission reduction targets through the ‘Science Based Targets’ initiative.
All of this runs parallel to the company’s continued experimentation with cleaner, greener products — 2017 saw Nike invest in more sustainable materials and process innovation strategies. In September, the brand launched its first shoes made with Flyleather — a new “super material” made with at least 50 percent recycled natural leather fiber and using 90 percent less water. Nike claims it has an 80-percent lower carbon footprint than traditional leather shoe manufacturing.
At the launch, Jones had said, "The earth is the athlete’s biggest playground, so one of our greatest opportunities is to create breakthrough products while protecting our planet.”
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