Samsung sets goal to attain 100% clean energy by 2050

Sep 14, 2022, 8:01 AM | Updated: Sep 17, 2022, 4:55 am
FILE - The company flag of Samsung Electronics, right, flutters next to the South Korean national f...

FILE - The company flag of Samsung Electronics, right, flutters next to the South Korean national flag in Seoul, South Korea, on Jan. 16, 2017. Samsung Electronics is shifting away from fossil fuels and aiming to entirely power its global operations with clean electricity by 2050, a challenging goal that experts say could be hampered by South Korea’s modest climate change commitments. Apc move photos already sent. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)

(AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Samsung Electronics is shifting away from fossil fuels and aiming to entirely power its global operations with clean electricity by 2050, a challenging goal that experts say could be hampered by South Korea’s modest climate change commitments.

South Korea-based Samsung is a top producer of computer memory chips and smartphones and the second biggest energy consumer behind Walmart among hundreds of global companies that have joined the “RE100” campaign to get 100% of electricity from renewable sources like wind or solar power.

In announcing its target Thursday the company said it aims to achieve net zero carbon emissions across its mobile device, television and consumer electronics divisions by 2030, and across all global operations including semiconductors by 2050.

It plans to invest 7 trillion won ($5 billion) through 2030 on projects aimed at reducing emissions from process gases, controlling and recycling electronic waste, conserving water and minimizing pollutants. It plans to develop new technologies to reduce power consumption in consumer electronics devices and data centers, which would require more efficient memory chips. It also will set long-term goals to reduce emissions in supply chains and logistics.

“Samsung is responding to the threats of climate change with a comprehensive plan that includes reducing emissions, new sustainability practices and the development of innovative technologies and products that are better for our planet,” Jong-Hee Han, the company’s CEO, said in an emailed statement.

Samsung’s plan drew praise from some of its investors, including Dutch pension fund manager APG, which said the company could potentially make a “significant contribution” in cleaning up South Korea’s electricity market, considering its impact and influence on the national economy.

Sam Kimmins, director of energy and head of RE100 at the London-based Climate Group, which leads the clean electricity initiative, said Samsung’s commitment would send a message to others in the market that “it is possible, and critical, to switch to 100% renewable electricity.”

APG expressed concern, however, that Samsung’s announcement comes at a time when South Korea has been dialing back on its climate change goals.

The conservative government of President Yoon Suk Yeol, who took office in May, has focused much of its energy policy on promoting nuclear-generated electricity. Desperate to boost a weak economy, Yoon’s government has also indicated reluctance to sharply reduce the country’s dependence on coal and gas, which generate about 65% of South Korea’s electricity.

South Korea got 7.5% of its electricity from renewable sources in 2021, significantly lower than the 30% average among rich nations making up the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Yoon’s government recently adjusted the country’s renewable energy target to 21% of the total energy mix by 2030, softening the 30% target announced by his liberal predecessor, Moon Jae-in.

Samsung acknowledged it would have a harder time converting to renewable electricity sources at home than at its foreign operations, where it aims to get to 100% clean energy by 2027. It said renewable energy supplies in South Korea “have begun to expand but remain limited,” while its electricity needs continue to rise as it boosts production at its domestic semiconductor lines to meet global demands.

“As a long-term investor in Korea, we are concerned about how the government plans to reconcile the industry’s desperate need for clean electricity to stay relevant in the long run,” Yoo-Kyung Park, APG’s Asia Pacific head of responsible investment and governance, said in a statement.

Samsung, South Korea’s biggest company, had faced growing pressure to do more to reduce its carbon emissions as it lagged behind some of its peers in climate commitments. Those companies include Apple, a major buyer of Samsung’s chips, which joined RE100 in 2016 and plans to be carbon neutral across its entire business and manufacturing supply chains by 2030, putting the pressure on its suppliers to meet those requirements.

Samsung is the crown jewel of an export-reliant economy driven by manufacturing of semiconductors, cars, display panels, mobile phones and ships, industries that tend to have high energy consumption.

Samsung used 25.8 terawatt hours of electricity for its operations last year, which was nearly twice the amount consumed by all households in the South Korean capital of Seoul and more than other global technology giants like Google, Apple, Meta, Intel, and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.

Samsung’s embrace of clean electricity could have significant supply chain effects, pushing other companies to boost their renewable energy supplies, said Ousam Jin from the Seoul-based Corporate Renewable Energy Foundation.

“Most meaningfully, Samsung’s RE100 commitment sends a strong signal to the renewable energy market and policymakers to increase the supply of renewable energy considering the company’s massive electricity usage,” Jin said.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

EU agrees on price cap for Russian oil over Ukraine war

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union countries agreed on Wednesday to impose new sanctions on Russia after it illegally annexed four regions in Ukraine, according to an EU official, including an expected price cap on Russian oil. EU member-state diplomats struck the deal in Brussels, said the official representing the Czech Republic, which holds the 27-nation […]
1 day ago
Nigeria's Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director General of the World Trade Organisation, WTO, speaks to the...
Associated Press

WTO predicts trade growth to slow next year amid crises

GENEVA (AP) — The World Trade Organization is predicting global trade volumes will grow a lackluster 1% next year as crises and challenges weigh on markets, including high energy prices, rising interest rates and uncertainties about Chinese manufacturing output amid the lingering COVID-19 pandemic. The Geneva-based trade body said Wednesday that the amount of goods […]
1 day ago
A resident wades through floodwaters, Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022, in Ubon Ratchathani province, northe...
Associated Press

Thai capital on alert for flooding as heavy rains expected

BANGKOK (AP) — Authorities in Thailand warned Wednesday of possible serious flooding in the capital and other parts of the central region from heavy seasonal rainfall expected through the rest of the week. The situation is being worsened by a large volume of water moving downriver from flooding in northern provinces and from discharges from […]
1 day ago
Men weep as they offer prayer outside Kanjuruhan Stadium where a soccer stampede killed more than 1...
Associated Press

Indonesian leader says locked gates contributed to deaths

MALANG, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo said on Wednesday that locked gates had contributed to the crush at the soccer stadium that left 131 dead and over 400 injured when police fired tear gas and set off a panicked run for the exits. Widodo made the statement after touring the Kanjuruhan soccer stadium […]
1 day ago
FILE - Residents who rode out the storm arrive at a dock to evacuate by boat in the aftermath of Hu...
Associated Press

Hurricane Ian closes some Florida schools indefinitely

The devastation from Hurricane Ian has left schools shuttered indefinitely in parts of Florida, leaving storm-weary families anxious for word on when and how children can get back to classrooms. As rescue and recovery operations continue in the storm’s aftermath, several school systems in hard-hit counties in southwestern Florida can’t say for sure when they’ll […]
1 day ago
FILE - In this image made from video, Taiwan's Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng speaks in Taipei, Ta...
Associated Press

Taiwan vows to respond to China’s military flight incursions

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Taiwan’s defense minister on Wednesday said the island will respond to incursions into its airspace by Chinese warplanes and drones, but gave no details on specific actions. Responding to questions from legislators, Chiu Kuo-cheng said China’s newly aggressive stance had changed what Taiwan would define as a “first strike” that would […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Samsung sets goal to attain 100% clean energy by 2050