VP Sustainability Letter
The U.S. power grid – the "largest machine ever built" - was designed to produce and distribute power safely, reliably and affordably, and it has done that extremely well. Now, faced with clear scientific and business drivers to address the impacts of greenhouse gas emissions, our sector is marching toward a sustainable energy future and NRG is leading the way.
“Faced with clear scientific and business drivers to address the impacts of greenhouse gas emissions, our sector is marching toward a sustainable energy future and NRG is leading the way.”
I'm proud to introduce my first sustainability report with NRG – and what a year to join the power industry. Here are a few facts to put 2016 in perspective:
- The number of Fortune 500 companies committing to 100 percent renewable electricity grew to 87, representing approximately 107 terawatt-hours of renewable power annually1
- For the first time in history, natural gas surpassed coal as the leading source of electric power in the U.S.2
- The U.S. saw more than 14 gigawatts of new solar installations – nearly double that of 20153 – as solar became the cheapest source of new electricity in many parts of the world4
- Investor funds adhering to sustainable investment principles reached $9 trillion in 2016, nearly 20 percent of total assets under professional management and a 33 percent increase since 20145
- The Paris Climate Agreement went into full effect, and more than 140 countries have ratified it to date
Sustainability at NRG goes beyond carbon emissions and is designed to drive business results across the organization while reducing risk and enhancing brand value. That's why in this report we're introducing a five-pillar strategy that comprises our customers, workplace, business, operations and suppliers. This new framework allows us to take a holistic view of our business while creating value for all our stakeholders.
To better communicate that framework, the SASB standards will help us integrate comparable, industry-specific sustainability accounting metrics into our existing reporting, empowering our stakeholders to make better-informed decisions.
We aim to operationalize our sustainability vision to help create a future where innovative and competitive forces are unleashed to decarbonize our economy, and where advancing renewable electricity generation and facilitating a low-carbon grid become explicit goals of electricity markets.
Vice President, Sustainability