In December 2015, the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) was held in Paris, France, reaching a global climate agreement. As a global corporate citizen and leading ICT industry brand, Acer supports this agreement’s goals of keeping global temperature increase within 2 degrees Celsius of the temperature prior to the Industrial Revolution, and within 1.5 degrees Celsius if possible. As such, in both our operating locations and our supply chain, we have taken actions that oriented toward Nationally Determined Contributions of each country.
Through our working group on risk management, we continue to consider the potential impacts of climate change, forecasting the probability and potential impact of these risks, drafting contingencies and risk mitigation measures, and developing crisis management and early warning mechanisms to mitigate the impact of risks on operations. Currently, major climate risks that have been identified and will have a more significant effect than in the past include natural disasters, the various national product energy efficiency regulations, consumer preferences regarding the environment and climate-friendly products, we are analyzing and developing countermeasures for the various factors according to their probability of occurrence and their potential impact, and we anticipate seeing a reduction in the impact of climate risks.
With regard to climate change derived opportunities, we not only continue to pursue improvements to product energy efficiency, but also strive to integrate our core businesses and new business groups to create a low-carbon, sustainable “Smart Strategy.”
This will enable us to make the most of the expertise of the ICT industry to help all levels of society reduce carbon emissions and make adaptation.
Greenhouse Gas Inventory
Corporate GHG Inventory
Since 2011, Acer has contracted a third-party verification agency with both CDP and Taiwan EPA accreditation to undertake external verification for the GHG Protocol Scope 1, Scope 2 and partial categories of Scope 3. Through this, we found that the Acer Group was responsible for 24,654.35 tonnes of Scope 1 and Scope 2 (market-based) carbon emissions in 2015, with Scope 1 emissions primarily from North American and European natural gas usage and global automotive combustion activity, and Scope 2 electricity usage accounting for approximately 70% of those emissions. In comparison with the baseline year (2009), 2015 total emissions were down 41.34%, and compared with 2014, they were down a slight 0.35%. Per capita emissions were approximately 3.24 tonnes*.
*Based on the end of 2015 number of employees, 7607 (including temporary and contracted staff)
In addition, in accordance with GHG Protocol Scope 3 principles, we inspect the emissions produced by staff business flights, product and service purchases, product shipping, and leased assets to gain a clearer understanding of carbon risks and opportunities in the value chain and help in the drafting of reduction strategies.
Acer GHG Inventory Scope
Scope 3 GHG Emissions Sources and Levels
Product Carbon Footprint Disclosure
In 2015, we took the lead in joining the Carbon Footprint Calculation Platform established by the Taiwanese EPA. With the cooperation of our major suppliers, we have set out a plan to broaden the carbon footprint inventory across indicator products, completing a carbon footprint report for the Chromebook C740. This cloud-based platform can effectively integrate many parties in the supply chain, providing timely calculation services and greatly reducing operating expenses, as well as accelerating inventory work.
This effort focuses on the office mode of the model, and the results have shown that carbon emissions across the product’s lifecycle total approximately 123.70 kg. The raw materials and the using phases account for greater proportions of that figure, specifically 64.50% and 33.97% of total emissions respectively. The lightweight, quick-booting, quick-connecting nature of the product and the more streamlined components used therein (in comparison with ordinary notebooks) may help reduce the emissions at the raw materials and user ends.
Chromebook C740 Lifecycle Carbon Emissions
Greenhouse Gas Reduction
According to Acer's energy and climate strategy, we continue to prioritize energy efficiency at all of our operating locations, with use of green energy the next priority. Where appropriate, we use renewable energy power generation facilities alongside measures such as Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) or carbon credits to support the development of renewable energy and climate protection plans.
Acer has set emission reduction targets; compared with 2009, in 2015 Acer’s global GHG emissions will reduce by 30%, followed by a 60% reduction between 2009 and 2020. Due to the efforts at all of our locations to improve energy efficiency, and at our major operating centers to use green electricity, in 2014 we achieved our goals ahead of schedule, accomplished 30% carbon reduction compared to 2009. We keep made the reduction in 2015.
GHG Emissions and Reduction Targets for Acer Group
Clean Energy Plan
In addition to energy saving and the related carbon reduction, Acer is also seeking the opportunity to use renewable energy in Acer's facilities worldwide. Acer's Clean Energy Plan has been decided into 4 steps in different priorities. The first priority of clean energy is to have a green energy initiatives by using renewable energy (RE) in Acer's own facility if the RE condition is available. The second priority is to seek the green electricity in grids and to make advocacy to the governments if there is no green electricity available. The third priority is to seek the suitable regions to build RE facilities worldwide, especially those regions with larger carbon emission by Acer's facilities. The last priority is to procure Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) or Carbon Credits when the other measures are not available.
Use Green Electricity
In 2015, Acer's use of renewable energy at its operating locations expanded to include Canada, Spain, and France. Usage methods differ by region, with Taiwan setting up its own renewable energy generators, such as solar panels; the US and Canada going through local Green-e certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs); and European countries such as Germany and Spain purchasing renewable energy Guarantees of Origin (GOs). Additionally, Acer America Corporation participates in the EPA Green Power Partnership Program, by adopting renewable energy certification, 100% of the company's electricity coming from wind, solar and other renewable energy sources. According to EPA Green Power Partnership statistics to 2015, Acer ranks in the top 30 largest renewable energy users of all companies in the ICT sector in the U.S., known as the Top 30 Tech & Telecom*.
Acer France has achieved 100% renewable energy usage certification
Acer Iberica uses renewable energy
Renewable Energy Facilities
The e-Enabling Data Center (eDC) in Taiwan is the first of our operations to install green energy facilities. And we extend to set the solar energy generation systems in Aspire Park and Aspire Resort. The total generation amount is about 200 thousand kWh per year. The total Green electricity usage including the self-generation and renewable energy certificates is about 19.8 million kWh in 2015. The proportion of green power in all Scope 2 electricity consumption has risen to about 41%.
Acer Smart Cloud Builder
Acer’s Smart Cloud Builder helps clients build their own cloud. This cloud platform includes high-performance server, storage, network devices, and OS virtualization, along with the Cloud Smart Portal (CSP). Our system provides clients with flexible resource scalability and cross-platform centralized management, making it more agile and a better fit for clients ’ needs. The CSP is a cloud-based “Infrastructure as a Service” (IaaS) management platform built on the Acer e-Enabling Data Center’s accumulated server rooms, systems, network, and information security capabilities.
Through Acer’s cloud computing solutions, clients can enjoy reduced capital expenses and operating costs, saving on overall expenses and taking a further step toward reduced electricity usage and greenhouse gas emissions. Taking a traditional 30U server rack as an example, the Acer cloud platform requires only 9U, using a greatly reduced amount of space and resources while also saving as much as one million kilowatt-hours of electricity (kWh). The Acer cloud platform can combine server resources and improve resource utilization efficiency, while also automatically monitoring resource utilization efficiency to provide a variety of relevant reports and help clients better understand how their ICT resources are being used. By helping clients in business, academia, the medical field, and government reduce the space and resources they use, we also help them increase operating efficiency and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.
Supply Chain GHG Management
Managing Climate Issues and Greenhouse Gases Emissions in the Supply Chain
Acer has been a member of CDP Supply Chain Program since 2008, and we have encouraged our suppliers to respond surveys regarding greenhouse gas emissions and policies in response to climate change. This information has then been made public or disclosed to members of this program. As of the end of 2015, Acer was the only company from Taiwan to be a participant in the program, with suppliers performing better than the global average.
In 2015, our disclosure performance saw significant improvement. Valid returns by Acer suppliers of CDP surveys reached 80%, well above the global average of 51%; average disclosure score was 78, a marked improvement on 2014 and above the global average of 60; overall performance was ranked a C grade, again surpassing the global average of D.
The environment section accounts for over 40% of our vendor CSR scorecard, addressing tier one and tier two suppliers' overall carbon management, carbon reduction results, and green energy usage status, amongst other items. These evaluations also include whether or not the group's greenhouse gases inventory and verification has been completed for the year and whether or not the supplier reached its intensity reduction target of 5%. In the medium term, one of our key issues is supply chain management in product operations, as through this we will be able to elevate the overall performance of our supply chain in responding to climate change.
Acer Supplier CDP Response Rates
Acer foundation keeps sponsoring the CDP event twice a year in Taiwan and invites our suppliers to join and learn more updated practices for carbon management and climate issues.
In January 2015, the World Resource Institute announced new Scope 2 Accounting Guidance focused on the calculation and disclosure of renewable energy and green electricity in greenhouse gas inventories. This aims to encourage businesses to adopt renewable energy sources as a means to reduce carbon emissions while providing guidelines for the follow-up disclosure thereof. In June 2015, we co-work with the Business Council for Sustainable Development of Taiwan to provide suppliers with free education and training in the new Scope 2 Accounting Guidance and they could get more clear definition of the green electricity and renewable energy also how to take these as key approached to reduce the carbon emission. We have also coordinated these efforts with our vendor CSR scorecard requirements in the hopes of further reducing overall supply chain carbon emissions.