PURCHASE, NY. — Through actions in areas such as farming practices, packaging materials and delivery vehicles, PepsiCo, Inc. plans to cut carbon emissions by more than 40% by 2030 when compared against a 2015 baseline. The goal more than doubles the company’s previous climate objective. If achieved, it would result in the reduction of over 26 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, or the equivalent of taking 5 million cars off the road for a year.
Purchase-based PepsiCo also plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2040, which would be a decade ahead of the goal called for in the Paris Agreement, an international treaty on climate change. Net-zero emissions refers to human-based GHG emissions being balanced out by removing GHGs from the atmosphere.
“The severe impacts from climate change are worsening, and we must accelerate the urgent systemic changes needed to address it,” said Ramon Laguarta, chairman and chief executive officer of PepsiCo. “There is simply no other option but immediate and aggressive action.”
Work on farms is underway. Illinois farmers are working with PepsiCo to use cover crops to improve soil health and limit the need for fertilizer, which reduces GHG emissions and captures carbon in the soil. PepsiCo has a network of demonstration farms in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, India and Vietnam. Sustainability programs there are increasing potato yields while lowering carbon emissions.
PepsiCo is focusing on reducing virgin plastic and finding new ways to use recycled plastic. The company is using electric and natural gas power in warehousing, transportation and distribution facilities. A Frito-Lay North America site in Modesto, Calif., has an electric fleet of vehicles and solar-powered buildings.
PepsiCo in 2020 hit its goal of sourcing 100% renewable electricity for its operations in the United States. Other recent achievements include installing more than 400 solar panels to help power a Quaker plant in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, and installing a windmill to generate about 40% of total electricity consumption at a Tropicana plant in Zeebrugge, Belgium.
This year wind projects in Texas and Nebraska should break ground. By the end of the year 15 countries in PepsiCo’s direct operations should be fully sourcing renewable electricity, which would mean more than 60% of the company’s direct global electricity needs would be met through renewable sources.
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