Microsoft appoints William Hudson as Asia Pacific sustainability policy director

Hudson joins the computing giant from McKinsey. His role will involve procuring renewable energy for the firm, which plans to erase its historical carbon footprint by 2050.

Microsoft building
Microsoft Research Asia in Beijing, China. Microsoft has committed to be carbon negative, which means it will be removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere rather than adding it. Image: Microsoft 

Computing giant Microsoft has appointed William Hudson as its Asia Pacific director of sustainability policy.

In his role, he will pursue Microsoft’s ambition to use only renewable energy to power its data centres, by working with policymakers and regulators in the region. He will be based in Singapore.

Microsoft has committed to be “carbon negative” – that is, the company will remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than it adds to it – by 2030 and remove all of its historical emissions – the company was founded in 1975 – by 2050.

William Hudson, Microsoft Asia Pacific director of sustainability policy.

William Hudson, Microsoft Asia Pacific director of sustainability policy. Image: LinkedIn

The firm cut its emissions by 0.5 per cent in 2022, and cited emissions that it cannot control – such as those from the energy grid and supply chain – as the reasons why decarbonisation progress has been slow. Microsoft has plans to massively ramp up its fleet of data centres, which are a major emissions source.

Hudson’s role will also involve working with Microsoft’s supply chain to identify decarbonisation opportunities and the company’s customers and partners to deploy data-driven sustainability solutions, including the use of artifiicial intelligence.

He joins Microsoft’s global sustainability policy team, and will work for the environmental sustainability unit, reporting to chief sustainability officer, Melanie Nakagawa. 

Hudson joins from McKinsey & Company where he was part of the consulting firm’s Southeast Asia sustainability team. Over his career, he has also worked for corporate decarbonisation advisory The Carbon Trust as Southeast Asia director.

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