BayWa r.e. Energy Report 2019 shows huge corporate appetite for clean energy – yet, bureaucracy and complex regulations are holding back full potential
In partnership with the RE-Source Platform, BayWa r.e. has published its Energy Report 2019 which analyses the attitudes of 1,200 European corporations towards renewable energy. While 89 per cent of all those surveyed agreed on the leading role corporations must play in driving the energy transition, 76 per cent identified bureaucracy and complex regulations as major barriers that are hindering further investment in renewables.
For the majority of corporations, the benefits were clear – almost 90 per cent felt the use of renewables resulted in a better public image, while 80 per cent felt it gave them a business advantage. And when deciding to invest in renewables, 92 per cent did so to reduce energy costs.
However, a perception of long payback periods (44 per cent) and high investment costs (38 per cent) were identified as barriers by corporations across all surveyed countries. At just under 50 per cent, the perception of investment costs as a barrier was highest in Poland and the UK.
“The BayWa r.e. Energy Report 2019 shows that corporations want to play a leading role in the renewable transition, driven by a desire to advance their sustainability goals, improve their public image and reduce energy costs. However, many continue to be held back by complex regulations and barriers relating to investment and payback. To overcome these, the industry must offer corporations a wide range of renewable supply options and work closely with governments to improve regulatory frameworks”, commented Matthias Taft, Member of the Board responsible for the energy business, BayWa AG.
Over half of the corporations surveyed had set targets regarding energy efficiency, the use of renewable energy, or the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
While companies in Germany, the UK and France mainly focus on greenhouse gas emission targets, companies in Poland, Italy and Spain aim to increase the overall use of renewable energy.
“Individuals and companies want to take climate action by investing in renewable energy generation and sourcing renewable energy. A simple and inclusive legal framework is essential to accelerate the transition to an affordable and clean energy market. This will enable many more people to live better lives within the limits of the planet,” says Karol Gobczynski, Head of Climate & Energy, Ingka Group, IKEA largest franchisee.
Over half of all surveyed corporations were planning to use renewable energy or install their own renewable energy facilities within the next five years. Spanish corporations were particularly ambitious with 76 per cent planning to increase their use of renewables, while Italian corporates recorded 70 per cent.
“The findings of the Energy Report 2019 show European corporate buyers are increasingly aware
of the strengthening business case for renewables. By pioneering innovative approaches and helping to shape regulatory frameworks, RE100 members have been instrumental in making corporate renewable energy use more mainstream. We expect more and more companies to step up their ambition and work with policymakers, regulators and energy suppliers to drastically accelerate clean power deployment,” added Sam Kimmins, Head of RE100, The Climate Group.
Of those corporations who identified bureaucracy and complex regulation as barriers to investment, frustration was highest for companies in Spain and the UK, both recording 79 per cent, while Germany and France recorded 73 per cent, and Poland and Italy ranged in between.
“The growing momentum of corporations working to scale renewable energy is clear,” added Bruce Douglas, Coordinator, RE-Source Platform / Deputy CEO, SolarPower Europe. "Major corporations support the RE-Source Declaration, which calls on European governments to make it easier to directly source renewable energy. This will help maximise Europe’s full potential for corporate investment in new sources of renewable energy.”
The Energy Report 2019 surveyed a total of 1,200 decision-makers in medium-sized and large companies in the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, France and Poland. It is the first systematic and quantitative opinion survey of its kind. The report is available for download at: Energy Report 2019