Greenpeace Calls Out Alibaba, Tencent in First China Ranking
· Greenpeace scorecard ranks companies by their energy usage
· China’s continuing reliance on coal power cited as major issue
By Vlad Savov, Bloomberg
January 9, 2020
Greenpeace, calling attention to the Chinese technology sector’s ballooning energy consumption, has ranked the country’s best and worst environmental citizens for the first time. The winner by a long margin turns out to be ChinData Group, a little-known unicorn-in-waiting backed by Bain Capital that outdoes far bigger names Alibaba and Tencent.
Ranking 15 of China’s biggest internet companies for the first time, Greenpeace found the majority lacking in areas such as transparency -- by way of public disclosure of their energy consumption -- and the speed at which they’re moving to renewable energy sources. The research was conducted in partnership with the North China Electric Power University and urges faster adoption of solar and wind power along with commitments to 100% renewable energy consumption.
Greenpeace did note progress among many of China’s internet giants, but said they lag global peers. Apple Inc., for one, has pledged to ditch fossil fuels and reduce their usage throughout the supply chain. Tencent Holdings Ltd. was among the best in disclosures of energy usage, though the company hadn’t made much of an advance in switching to renewable sources, the activist group said. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. scored highest after ChinData but only managed a mark of 60 out of 100, illustrating the enormity of the task ahead. 21Vianet Group Inc., Microsoft Corp.’s cloud provision partner in China, scored a paltry 21.
“Power consumption from China’s internet industry is skyrocketing,” said Greenpeace East Asia climate and energy campaigner Ye Ruiqi. “And it’s imperative that Chinese internet giants lead the sector to break away from its reliance on coal.”
Around two thirds of China’s power is produced from coal-burning plants...
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