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Apparel Companies Commit to White House Climate Change Pledge

solar panels climate change

Levi’s, Nike, Target and Walmart are among the dozens of global companies that have signed the Obama administration’s “American Business Act on Climate Pledge,” demonstrating their commitment to curbing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and investing in clean energy.

The White House said Monday that 68 companies had joined the original 13 that signed on in July to bring the total number of participants to 81.

Together, these companies have operations in all 50 U.S. states, employ more than nine million people, generate more than $3 trillion in annual revenue and have a combined market capitalization of more than $5 trillion.

By signing the White House pledge, the companies are voicing support for a “strong” outcome in the Paris climate negotiations later this year as well as agreeing to reduce their emissions, increase low-carbon investments, deploy more clean energy and set an example for their peers.

Levi’s, for instance, has pledged to reduce GHG emissions by 25 percent by 2020 in its office, retail and distribution locations and purchase a minimum of 20 percent of its energy from renewable resources within five years.

Similarly, Nike has vowed to reduce energy consumption by 20 percent over a 10-year period in a majority of owned or operated facilities within its U.S. portfolio and will publicly share its progress as part of the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge.

Target, meanwhile, is aiming to achieve Energy Star certification in 80 percent of its buildings and divert 70 percent of retail waste from landfill through reuse or recycle programs by 2020, in addition to expanding its use of solar rooftop panels to a total of 500 stores and distribution centers.

Walmart, one of the original signatories, plans to establish joint agricultural partnerships with 17 suppliers, cooperatives and service providers on 23 million acres of land in the U.S. and Canada, with the potential to reduce 11 million metric tons of GHG within five years.

As President Obama said at the United Nations Climate Summit last September, “There’s one issue that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other and that is the urgent and growing threat of a changing climate.”

His administration will announce a third round of pledges later this fall.