Jinko Solar’s Path to Net Zero: A Commitment Beyond Business

Despite edging closer to the Paris Agreement’s 2030 deadline for emission reductions, global CO2 emissions have kept increasing, growing to a new high of over 36.8  gigatons in 2022.  As the impacts of climate change continue to worsen and reverberate throughout the globe, many industry leaders have begun to recognize the severity of the issue and are doing their part to remain carbon neutral.

Jinko Solar, a world leader in the supply and manufacturing of solar panels and energy storage, is one company dedicated to an environmental, social, and governance framework. With a company mission of optimizing its energy portfolio and enabling a sustainable future, Jinko Solar has committed itself to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Jinko Solar’s Climate Pledges

Jinko Solar has implemented a robust climate change management system to develop and evaluate sustainable metrics and targets, enact strategies that mitigate climate risks, and promote a transition to green operations.  As a part of Jinko Solar’s climate management system, the company has joined several climate initiatives to provide sustainable objectives and indicators of success.

In 2019, Jinko Solar made history as the first solar manufacturer to join both the EP100 and RE100 climate initiatives, respectively pledging to improve internal efficiency and power all operations with 100% renewable energy by 2028.  In addition to its products consistently breaking efficiency records — with the company’s TOPCon solar cell reaching an industry high of 26.89 maximum solar conversion efficiency — Jinko Solar has been fulfilling these pledges by installing solar panels on roofs of its production facilities.

As of today, three of the company’s factories in Chuxiong and Leshan, China, and Malaysia are completely on renewable energy, and over 50%  of Jinko Solar’s operations are powered by a mix of renewable energies including hydro, solar, and wind power.

“After years of hard work we’re proud to have reached this significant milestone,” said Jinko Solar Vice President Dany Qian about these renewable achievements. “It is proving the business case that well-managed companies can reduce the greenhouse gases that are causing the climate crisis while simultaneously reducing their energy costs. Now that renewable energies are more mainstream and the cost of the energy is far lower, ecological responsibility can be good business.”

To further its commitment to sustainability and green operations, in 2021 Jinko Solar joined the Science Based Targets initiative, which aids companies in establishing a road map for reducing emissions in line with the Paris Agreement.  With this initiative, Jinko Solar has pledged to attain complete net-zero operations by 2050.

“Our commitment to joining the SBTi extends beyond internal measures,” Qian told online news and analysis service  Environmental Finance about joining the initiative. “While RE100 showcases our rigorous self-regulation, SBTi signifies a broader responsibility that encompasses our entire supply chain. As a prominent player in the solar industry, Jinko Solar recognizes the need to play a more significant role in addressing climate challenges.”

Based on SBTi’s assistance and the Greenhouse  Gas Protocol framework for emission measurements, Jinko Solar has established a greenhouse gas emissions inventory and is currently working toward reducing its emissions.

Net-Zero Progress

Since taking the SBTi pledge in 2021, Jinko Solar has been making swift progress toward its 2050 goal. By the end of 2022, the company had already reduced its emissions by ​​32,800 tonnes through solar installations and implementing internal emission-reduction systems.

Earlier this year, Jinko Solar’s wafer factory in Leshan became the first solar wafer factory to receive a Zero Carbon Factory certification from the Zero Carbon Factory Evaluation Code.

This code evaluates businesses based on a comprehensive list of zero-carbon standards within six assessment indicators including infrastructure, intelligent information management system for energy and carbon emissions, energy and resource use, products, greenhouse gas reduction implementation, and carbon offset implementation.

While the Leshan factory was able to achieve net-zero status largely thanks to energy management, improved efficiency, and emission-reducing technologies, Jinko Solar’s dedication to sustainable manufacturing and cradle-to-cradle product life cycles cannot be overlooked.

Two of the company’s products — the Tiger and Tiger Pro solar panels — have received carbon footprint verification from TÜV Rheinland, a third-party quality assurance company.

This verification provides a third-party certificate of a product’s sustainability throughout its entire life cycle, from the sourcing of raw materials to waste management and final disposal. Products with carbon footprint certification are provided an overview of emissions sources to inform swift and sophisticated reduction measures.

“We are very proud to receive this certification from TÜV Rheinland. It is a strong endorsement of our efforts over the years to improve the energy efficiency of our products and execute our carbon emission reduction plans,” said Dr. Hao  Jin, Jinko Solar’s chief technology officer. “Our green achievements demonstrate that we are heading in the right direction and we will continue to further support our customers and end users who are conscious about their environmental impact and promote practical ways of reducing their carbon footprint.”

Sustainable Leadership

With its fervent commitment to environmental stewardship and green manufacturing, Jinko Solar has established itself as a sustainability leader in addition to its status as the solar industry’s best seller.

Recently, the company topped the photovoltaic industry as the leader in S&P Global Corporate Sustainability Assessment. This assessment, consisting of an annual evaluation of the sustainable practices of over 10,000 companies, reflects Jinko Solar’s exceptional environmental, social, and governance framework and emphasizes the company’s continued strides toward establishing a green future.

For its net-zero initiatives, the company was also awarded the 2023 Global Sustainable Company Award by Environmental Finance.  “This accolade fuels our determination to drive innovation, embrace responsibility, and champion environmental stewardship,”  commented Qian.

As Jinko Solar continues to gain recognition for its strides toward net zero, the company is in a position to transform the solar industry into one as sustainable as its products, where carbon neutrality and renewable operations are expected from every player. In a time when industries continue to put profits over the environment, companies like Jinko Solar are proving that sustainable business practices can have you seeing green in more ways than one.

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