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World Wildlife Fund On Balance

filtered by category: Climate Change

  • Date: 13 August 2015
  • Author: Laura Margison, WWF

Today marks Overshoot Day – the moment in time when we (humans) have used up the annual natural capital the planet has to offer. From this day through the end of the year, we are operating in the red. This means we are fishing beyond our oceans’ limits, cutting more trees and clearing more woodland than our natural forests can provide, and drawing down on the water table more than rain can replenish, all the while increasing carbon and methane emissions. Simply put, our global demand is exceeding the planet’s supply.

So what can we do? The problem seems overwhelming and perhaps too large to resolve, but there are a package of solutions, each contributing to a healthier planet.

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  • Date: 01 May 2015
  • Author: James Beard, WWF and Rafael A Grillo Avila, Environmental Defense Fund

If international aviation were a country, it would be a global top ten carbon emitter, with emissions expected to triple or quadruple by 2040. This is why the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has agreed to cap net carbon emissions from international aviation at 2020 levels.

ICAO aims to achieve this goal through technical and operational measures; carbon pricing through market-based measures (MBM’s); and biofuels. Many airlines see biofuels as a “silver bullet” for meeting their carbon goals. Already over 40 airlines have flown over 600,000 biofuel-powered flights.

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  • Date: 25 March 2015
  • Author: Amy Ridener, Manager of Sustainability, Verizon

On March 28th you can be part of Earth Hour, a worldwide project organized by World Wildlife Fund. On that day, from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. local time, Earth Hour will bring together families, businesses, government leaders and others to turn off all nonessential lighting for one hour as a statement of collective concern about climate change.

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  • Date: 17 February 2015

The Buyers’ Principles were launched by WWF and the World Resources Institute (WRI) in July, 2014 with 12 major companies. Word continues to spread and there are now 25 signatories.

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  • Date: 29 July 2014
  • Author: Karin Krchnak, WWF

Today, as part of the White House’s Climate Data Initiative, the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) Initiative released the “Investor Guidance Document: Water Risks in Agricultural Supply Chains” to educate and engage potentially at-risk companies on the impacts water scarcity could have on their supply chains. With over 1260 signatories, the PRI initiative represents over $45 trillion USD in management assets, including water intensive commodities like cotton, sugar and corn.

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  • Date: 11 July 2014
  • Author: Marty Spitzer, Director US Climate and Renewable Energy Policy, WWF

What can rotary dial telephones, cathode ray tube (CRT) televisions and door to door milk delivery teach us about the renewable energy revolution? They show us how once commonplace products and services have and will always be replaced by newer ones. It’s not farfetched to say 2014 is to renewable energy what 1955 was to the CRT TV – the golden age of renewable energy is just now upon us.

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  • Date: 19 June 2014
  • Author: Bryn Baker, Manager of Renewable Energy, WWF

For the largest corporations in the United States, clean energy is business as usual. And it’s good for business and our planet. In fact, nearly half of the largest companies in the U.S. are capturing significant business value by cutting emissions and using clean forms of energy to power their operations.

A new report from WWF, Ceres, Calvert Investments and David Gardiner and Associates finds that, 43 percent, or 215 of the companies in the Fortune 500 have set targets in one of three categories: (1) greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction commitments, (2) energy efficiency, and (3) renewable energy.

Leaders such as Caterpillar, Dow Chemical, General Electric, General Motors, Procter & Gamble, Sprint, and Walmart have set targets across all three categories.

The largest companies in the Fortune 500 – the Fortune 100 – continue to lead: 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies have set clean energy and GHG reduction targets as of 2013. Since the first Power Forward report was released, companies like Apple and Pepsi have joined the ranks of other Fortune 100 companies with climate and clean energy targets.

The aggregate impact of the company actions is significant. Among the 53 Fortune 100 companies reporting on climate and energy targets to CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project), they are conservatively saving $1.1 billion annually through their emission reduction and renewable energy initiatives. In 2012 alone, these companies decreased their annual emissions by approximately 58.3 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent – comparable to retiring about 15 coal plants – saving them an average of $19 per ton of CO2 equivalent.

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The scale of these savings is likely to keep climbing rapidly as more companies realize the potential for big cost reductions enabled by energy efficiency and renewable energy. Individual companies have already achieved significant savings and have high expectations going forward. For example, IBM has saved a cumulative $477 million through its annual energy conservation actions. Walmart expects to save $1 billion globally per year through its renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives. Dell estimates that improvements in the efficiency of its products will save customers $1.1 billion annually. The trends are clear: leading companies are capturing business value by executing effective clean energy strategies, and with proven results, more are sure to join the pursuit.

  • Date: 06 November 2013
  • Author: Bryn Baker, manager, renewable energy, WWF and Dan Seif, principal, RMI

WWF and RMI Hold Forum with Large Companies on the Riddles of Renewables

Empowered by aggressive climate and energy targets, companies more than ever before are driving the transition to renewable energy – but that effort is not without hurdles.

WWF’s Power Forward report, for example, showed that 60 percent of the Fortune 100 and Global 100 companies have climate goals. To meet these targets, renewables are high on the hit list but companies are finding buying and investing in renewable energy particularly challenging, even when they’re putting their shoulders into it. Witness Google’s white paper calling for new approaches to expand renewable electricity procurement options.

To address these challenges, WWF and RMI held a Corporate Renewable Energy Buyer’s Day. Companies representing more than $1 trillion in annual revenue discussed and prioritized how to best execute against these challenges.

Here’s what we found:

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  • Date: 04 October 2013
  • Author: Keya Chatterjee

Today at the Sustainable Cleveland Summit, WWF awarded the cities of Cleveland and Cincinnati with our first 'Bright Place to Live' awards for providing 100% renewable electricity to residents.

Just as more and more companies are procuring renewable electricity for their operations, many US cities are now assessing their options for going renewable. Companies and cities alike are purchasing certified Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) that prove electricity was produced with renewable energy, going even further to sign contracts called Power Purchase Agreements to buy new renewable electricity, and even beginning to produce their own renewable energy.

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  • Date: 26 June 2013
  • Author: Nick Conger

The world has never seen economic growth at a rate currently happening in China. Having surpassed Japan in 2011, it’s quickly become the world’s second largest economy and its GDP continues to expand (though ebbing in recent years).

I’m just back from a 10-day visit to China and can attest to this growth. Industrial cranes fill the skylines from Beijing to Dalian to Wuhan, construction vehicles clog traffic patterns, pollution billows into the air. So much that China is responsible for a quarter of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.

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