IKEA steps up climate action with €1 billion pledge

The world's biggest furniture retailer will invest €600 million in solar and wind energy while the IKEA foundation will put €400 million to support communities impacted by climate change.

IKEA Group and IKEA Foundation on Thursday announced that it would spend  €1 billion this year on renewable energy and on supporting communities impacted by climate change.

The announcement comes as governments met in Bonn, Germany, to negotiate a global climate change agreement – due at the end of the year at the United Nations climate change meeting in Paris.

IKEA Group will fork out €600 million to invest in renewable energy, while the other €400 million will be spent by IKEA Foundation on local communities most at risk.

IKEA Group has been leading the corporate sector in renewable energy investments. Its latest pledge builds on the EUR 1.5 billion it has already invested in wind and solar energy since 2009.

We are going all in to transform our business, to ensure that it is fit for the future and we can have a positive impact. 

Peter Agnefjäll, President and CEO of IKEA Group

The company said in a statement it is on track to becoming energy independent, which means producing as much renewable energy as it consumes in its buildings.

It already operates 314 offsite wind turbines and has installed 700,000 solar panels across the buildings it owns.

Peter Agnefjäll, President and CEO of IKEA Group, declared that “we are going all in to transform our business, to ensure that it is fit for the future and we can have a positive impact. This includes going 100 per cent for renewable energy, by investing in wind and solar.”

The home furnishing giant, which has 322 stores in 28 countries and had 716 million visitors to their stores in 2014, expects to invest €500 million into wind and €100 million in solar energy by 2020.

In the joint announcement, IKEA Foundation also announced its commitment of €400 million up to 2020 to support families and communities who are most impacted by climate change.

The foundation funds programmes that create long-term opportunities for children living in some of the world’s poorest communities.

Last year, the foundation contributed €104 million to more than 40 partner organisations.

This new funding will target poor communities and help them build resilience to climate change, including improving their quality of life by enabling the adoption of renewable energy technologies in homes, schools and businesses.

Per Heggenes, CEO of the IKEA Foundation, said: “We’re working toward a world where children living in poverty have more opportunities to create a better future for themselves and their families. Tackling climate change is critical to achieving this goal.”

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