Climate change is the defining challenge of our time. The threat it poses to the global economy, geopolitical stability, and the systems that support life on Earth eclipse all other issues facing humanity.
Coastal towns and cities are already enduring rising sea levels. Larger and more frequent wildfires are destroying communities. Droughts are affecting farmland and creating water shortages. All while extreme weather events are leaving billions of dollars of economic losses in their wake.
In 2018 and 2019, I had the honor of participating in an annual meeting of executives from the world’s largest oil and gas companies and investment funds, convened at the Vatican by His Holiness Pope Francis. Framing climate change as an epochal challenge, Pope Francis emphasized our collective responsibility to meet the energy needs of the world’s people while preserving and protecting the natural environment and advancing economic prosperity, especially for the poor.
Pattern Energy is dedicated to confronting this challenge through our mission to transition the world to renewable energy. Everything we do contributes to a larger vision of helping the world combat a changing climate by delivering renewable energy in a way that is economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable.
I’m proud that we delivered more than 11,000 gigawatt-hours of clean, renewable electricity to the grid in 2018 – enough to power more than 1 million homes. The energy we generated from wind instead of coal avoided carbon emissions equal to taking 2.4 million cars off the roads last year. The facilities we operate also strengthen their local communities, which are projected to receive more than $1 billion in economic benefits over the life of our current fleet.
Our inaugural report shares details about the sustainability of our operations, from the environmental advantages and safety of our facilities and the economic benefits we bring to our host communities, to the ways we support the professional and personal growth of our employees. Sharing our practices and performance metrics demonstrates our accountability to our stakeholders and enables us to find new ways to improve, supporting the long-term sustainability of our business and creating greater value for our shareholders.