The behemoth of technology companies, Sony, has been a household name for decades. With operations spanning three continents, it comes as no surprise that Sony is known the world over for its high-quality products such as televisions, gaming consoles, cameras, phones, entertainment systems, and audio equipment. Recently, Sony is making news for their renewable energy endeavors. The company has joined the likes of Google, Apple, and Facebook to reduce their carbon footprint and do their part in saving the planet by joining the RE100 club and pledging to go completely green by 2040.
Sony is by no means alone in their efforts. The RE100 club is a collaborative initiative of companies who have vowed to achieve 100 percent renewable energy use by 2050 and is comprised of over 140 other businesses. The club is operated by the NGO The Climate Group, which is an international non-profit that encourages companies and governments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and protect forests as well as water resources. Sony committed itself to beat the deadline by a decade and set a smaller goal of achieving a minimum of 30 percent renewable electricity use by 2030.
Transferring all operations over to rely solely on renewable energy sources is a massive undertaking, but one in which Sony already has experience. Their project, dubbed the “Road to Zero” is well underway, especially in Europe where 100 percent of the operations are already green. But how does the tech giant plan to transform its operations on two other continents where its presence is much more widespread? The next step in Sony’s plan begins with replacing non-renewable energy at their sites in the United States, China, and Japan with more renewable methods such as solar panels. The biggest concern comes from their semiconductor manufacturing sites which are the largest culprit of non-renewable energy consumption. Their published plan is not clear about its final decision, but Sony is considering supplying power to those sites through electrical grids owned by other companies who use sustainable energy methods.
To date, the actions Sony has taken since 2016 have reduced CO2 emissions by 154,000 tons. By leading by example, household-name companies have an immense power to influence companies, not to mention their consumers, to reduce their carbon footprint and incorporate renewable resources into their businesses, homes, and daily lives. These companies have a responsibility as leaders in their industries to follow through on their promises and to show the world going green is possible no matter the size of a company. The CEO of Sony, Kenichiro Yoshida, has ensured the company will continue to be transparent about its energy usage and their efforts to catch up to their rivals’ level of renewable energy consumption and stated “by joining RE100, we hope to contribute the expanded use of renewable energy not only within Sony but by the industry at large.” In the meantime, Sony strives to produce more environmentally conscious products as the company moves towards its energy goals.