McKinsey & Company pledges to source all electricity from renewables by 2025

12 September 2018 3 min. read

McKinsey & Company recently became the first management consultancy to join RE100, a group of companies that aim to source all of their electricity from renewable energy sources. The firm aims to source 95% of its electricity from renewables by the end of the year, and 100% by 2025.

In an environment where firms increasingly have to live their commitment to causes rather than pay lip service to them, strategy consultancy McKinsey & Company has strongly driven sustainability initiatives throughout its operation.

As a supporter of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Agreement, as well a participant in the UN Global Compact, McKinsey has been working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, waste, and water usage throughout its offices. Some initiatives include the wide use of videoconferencing to reduce unnecessary travel (especially flights), installing recycling hubs, and locating offices in energy efficient buildings.

The prestigious consultancy has further taken the bold step of aiming for carbon neutrality by the end of this year. Since 90% of its emissions come from the extensive travel of jet-setting consultants, the firm has to focus on investing in carbon reduction projects in diverse geographies and technologies that offset their own output. There still is no practical alternative to the firm’s ‘have strategy, will travel’ business model, and solar-powered jets aren’t really on the menu.

The firm has also set aggressive long-term targets to decrease their greenhouse gas emissions, with a reduction of 60% for direct emissions and purchased energy by 2030, and 90% by 2050.McKinsey & Company pledges to source all electricity from renewables by 2025As part of its carbon neutrality goal, McKinsey recently joined the RE100 coalition of firms that have pledged to source all their electricity from renewable sources. McKinsey plans to source 95% of its electricity from renewables by the end of the year, and 100% by 2025.

“We are proud to be joining the RE100 group of companies who are demonstrating their leadership by committing to 100 per cent renewable electricity," said Kevin Sneader, global managing partner at McKinsey.

The RE100 campaign was developed by two London-based nonprofits: The Climate Group and CDP. The Climate Group works with businesses and governments to address climate change through renewable energy and greenhouse gas reduction, while the CDP supports cities and companies in the disclosure of their environmental impact.

Other organizations that recently joined the sustainable energy campaign include UK bank RBS, shared workplace company WeWork, and Sony Corporation. RE100 already includes more than 140 multinationals committed to using 100 percent renewables in their operations. Together, members currently create demand for 182TWh of renewable electricity per year – or enough to power a medium-sized country like Poland or Thailand. United, the firms send a strong signal to governments that clean energy is the way to go.

"By stepping up and joining RE100 these leading companies are saying loud and clear that 100 per cent renewables are the solution - they reduce business risk and drive down greenhouse gas emissions," commented Helen Clarkson, CEO of The Climate Group.

To reach its RE100 goals, McKinsey will purchase power through green tariffs from utilities and work with landlords where electricity is provided in offices the firm leases. Where the above is not possible, McKinsey will purchase energy attribute certificates equal to their consumption to send a demand signal and support renewable energy development.