Kimberly-Clark Corporation has made a major commitment to renewable energy with agreements to annually purchase approximately 245 MW of electricity from two new wind power projects in Texas and Oklahoma. The renewable energy supplied by the wind farms is equivalent to about one-third of the electricity needs of Kimberly-Clark's North American manufacturing operations and will enable the company to surpass its greenhouse gas reduction goal four years earlier than anticipated.
The company entered long-term power purchase agreements to take 120 MW or 78% of electricity to be generated by the Rock Falls Wind project being developed by EDF Renewables in northern Oklahoma and 125 MW or 42% of the electricity to be generated by the Santa Rita Wind Energy Center being built by Invenergy in West Texas. The energy supplied by the two wind farms will enable Kimberly-Clark to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 550,000 metric tons annually.
"These agreements mark Kimberly-Clark's first use of utility-scale renewable energy and are a step-change in our energy and climate strategy to reduce climate change impacts, improve operating efficiency and benefit cost savings," said Lisa Morden, Global Head of Sustainability at Kimberly-Clark. "Adding wind-generated electricity to the energy mix will enable the company to achieve more than a 25% reduction in GHG emissions in 2018, which is four years ahead of the original 2022 target to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 20% from 2005 levels."
The Rock Falls Wind project will become operational by the end of 2017, and the Santa Rita facility is expected to begin commercial operation by the second quarter of 2018. Renewable Choice Energy helped broker the two agreements.
Kimberly-Clark has signed on to the Corporate Renewable Energy Buyers' Principles, a collaboration of leading companies seeking simplified access to the renewable electricity to meet their clean and low carbon energy goals.
The Buyers' Principles tell utilities and other suppliers what industry-leading, multinational companies are looking for when buying renewable energy from the grid. The project is facilitated by World Resources Institute and World Wildlife Fund.