Iowa, Illinois and New Jersey are the best states in the US for procuring clean energy, a new study from the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) has concluded.
The three states topped a new ranking of US regions based on the ease with which large corporates can procure clean energy, such as wind and solar power, for their operations.
The paper, released yesterday, suggests states across the US will attract more businesses – and with them jobs and investment – if they invest in boosting renewable energy capacity. By 2025 some of the US’ biggest retail and technology firms are expected to move to using 100 per cent renewable energy to power their activities, leading to an additional 60GW of clean energy demand, the report notes.
“The technology industry is increasingly transitioning to clean energy to meet customer demands, consumer expectations and our own strong sustainability commitments,” Rick Goss, senior vice president for environment and sustainability for ITI, said in a statement. “Clean and renewable energy sources are good for the environment, and they provide energy reliability and price stability benefits that are good for business. States interested in growing their tech sector should embrace this trend.”
Energy policies across US states vary widely, and some make it easier than others for large corporate companies to develop, fund or procure energy from large renewables projects. While Iowa, Illinois and New Jersey topped the rankings thanks to their high levels of clean energy development and favourable regulatory environment, Idaho, Wyoming, and Alabama came bottom of the list.
The report calls on policymakers at state level to take action to make it easier for corporates to procure clean energy within their borders by removing barriers to corporates installing their own clean energy projects, simplifying the regulatory landscape and backing new innovations governing the purchase of clean energy.
The report’s findings were backed by many of the world’s most famous technology and retail brands, including Walmart and Microsoft.
“Walmart is proud to be recognised as a leader in renewable energy procurement, and we are encouraged that a number of states have made significant efforts to support the practice,” Mark Vanderhelm, vice president of energy at Walmart, said in a statement. “Much work remains to be done, and we look to these efforts to determine the best practices that will drive the broader creation of cost-effective, customer-focused, and operationally sustainable renewable energy procurement programs.”