Primed for Net-Zero: Amazon announces 37 new Renewable Energy projects across Globe

April 20, 2022
The additional 3.5 GW of renewables could push the company to offset 100 percent of its energy use with zero-carbon generation by 2025—five years ahead of the original schedule.The acceleration would grow Amazon’s total clean energy procurements by 30%

The most popular online retail company in the U.S., maybe everywhere, is dramatically stepping up the breakneck pace toward its already ambitious Net-Zero energy goals.

Amazon announced Wednesday it is pursuing 37 new renewable energy projects around the world. The additional 3.5 GW of renewables could push the company to offset 100 percent of its energy use with zero-carbon generation by 2025—five years ahead of the original schedule.

The acceleration would grow Amazon’s total renewable energy procurements by 30 percent to 15.7 GW. These include 310 projects across 19 countries. 

Most of these utility-scale solar and wind projects are not linked directly to Amazon facilities, but the investment helps push the power generated onto the grid and increases the portion of zero-carbon energy in the generation portfolio. Wind, hydro and solar are about 17 percent of the U.S. electricity generation resource mix.

"Our commitment to protecting the planet and limiting Amazon’s impact on the environment has led us to become the largest corporate buyer of renewable energy in the world in both 2020 and 2021. Given the growth of our business, and our mission to run 100% of Amazon’s operations on renewable energy, we aren’t slowing our renewable investments down," said Andy Jassy, CEO of Amazon. "We now have 310 wind and solar projects across 19 countries, and are working hard to reach our goal of powering 100% of our business on renewable energy by 2025—five years ahead of our original target of 2030."

The 37 new projects announced today are located across the U.S., Spain, France, Australia, Canada, India, Japan, and the United Arab Emirates. They vary in project type and size, with three new wind farms, 26 new solar farms, and eight new rooftop solar installations at its buildings around the world.

As a result of these projects, Amazon now has a total of 310 renewable energy projects, including 134 wind and solar farms and 176 rooftop solar projects.

Once operational, Amazon’s 310 projects are expected to produce 42,000 GWh of renewable energy each year—enough electricity output to power 3.9 million U.S. homes annually. The carbon-free energy generated by these projects will also help avoid 17.3 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually, avoiding the equivalent of the annual emissions of more than 3.7 million cars in the U.S. each year.

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Amazon has led all companies globally in renewable energy power purchase agreements (PPAs) for two years in a row. In 2021, the long-term PPA pipeline committed by Amazon totaled 6,212 MW (or 6.2 GW), slightly ahead of fellow Seattle-based tech giant Microsoft at 6.15 GW.

These PPAs helped finance major renewable energy projects across the world. Last year, Amazon invested in a 118-MW Oklahoma wind farm as well as 400 MW of solar projects in Ohio.

Wednesday’s expansion includes 23 renewable projects in 13 U.S. states. The biggest is a 500-MW wind farm in Texas.

Amazon also committed to utility-scale zero-carbon projects in Spain, France, the United Arab Emirates, Australia, Canada, India and Japan.

According to Forbes, Amazon is among the world’s 10 biggest companies. It has more than one million employees, generated $386 billion in sales last year and gained $21 billion in profits.

(Rod Walton, senior editor for EnergyTech, is a 14-year veteran of covering the energy industry both as a newspaper and trade journalist. He can be reached at [email protected]).

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