Macquarie Group has signed up to the global initiative RE100, underscoring its plans to power its global operations with 100% renewable electricity by 2025. The investment bank has been carbon-neutral in sourcing its energy supply since 2010 by purchasing carbon credits, but it will now also seek to develop its own projects and enter into power purchase agreements to supply clean electricity for its buildings.
The Sydney-based group employs more than 15,700 people in 31 markets. At the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York in September, it vowed to develop a 20 GW pipeline of renewable energy projects over the next five years through its Green Investment Group (GIG), and announced plans to join RE100. On Wednesday, the bank officially became a signatory to the initiative, as announced by the Australian coordinator of the RE100 initiative, Jon Dee.
EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE THAT @MACQUARIE HAS JOINED @THERE100
SO GOOD TO HAVE THEM ON BOARD. #MACQUARIE IS PLAYING A BIG ROLE IN THE RENEWABLE ENERGY SPACE.@MCANNONBROOKES @SIMONAHAC WE NOW HAVE THE BIG 5 BANKS ONBOARD #RE100 IN AUSTRALIA! HTTPS://T.CO/ERZ6ZABBTK
— JON DEE (JONDEE.COM) (@JONDEEOZ) NOVEMBER 26, 2019
Macquarie has a long track record of investing in renewable energy projects. Its own investments since 2010 and its acquisition of GIG in 2017 have contributed to more than 22 GW of renewable generation capacity, utilizing more than AUD 8 billion ($5.4 billion) of direct and arranged finance. In one of its major commitments, Macquarie agreed to provide development capital and take an equity stake in an AUD 22 billion solar+wind hybrid project in northwestern Australia, the 11 GW Asian Renewable Energy Huba, reflecting the growing confidence in the project’s potential.
The group is now joining a growing pool of Australian businesses in the RE100 global initiative, which has thus far been dominated by the banking sector. Commonwealth Bank of Australia was the first Australian business to join RE100 last November. On the back of a 12-year PPA, it has been sourcing energy from the largest wind project in New South Wales – the 270 MW Sapphire Wind Farm – since January of this year. It is also moving toward 100% renewable power by 2030. It was later followed by Westpack, Bank of Australia and ANZ.
The RE100 member list also includes QBE Insurance Group and Atlassian, which became the first Australian tech company to vow to globally go all green by 2025. Convened by The Climate Group, the RE100 global corporate leadership initiative brings together 212 companies committed to sourcing 100% renewable electricity.