Aligned with its mission to help build a brighter and more sustainable future for the communities it serves, FirstEnergy Corp (NYSE:FE) today announced a pledge to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. The company also set an interim goal for a 30% reduction in greenhouse gases within the company’s direct operational control by 2030, based on 2019 levels.

“We believe climate change is among the most important issues of our time,” said President and Acting Chief Executive Officer Steven E. Strah. “We will help address this challenge by building a more climate-resilient energy system and supporting the transition to a carbon-neutral economy. Our ambitious new carbon goal and comprehensive climate strategy are fully aligned with our regulated business strategy and support our commitments to our customers, communities and investors, as well as environmental stewardship.”

FirstEnergy’s comprehensive Climate Position and Strategy Statement outlines the company’s aggressive, business-wide plans to mitigate risks from climate change, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and enable its customers and communities to thrive in a carbon-neutral economy. Actions to achieve these goals include:

  • Hardening its transmission and distribution systems to reduce the physical risks of climate change
  • Replacing conventional utility trucks with electric and hybrid vehicles and responsibly replacing other aging equipment that emits greenhouse gasses
  • Reducing emissions at its small regulated generation fleet, while preparing for the transition away from coal-fired power in West Virginia by 2050
  • Supporting renewable and distributed energy resources, including seeking approval in 2021 to construct a solar generation source of at least 50 megawatts in West Virginia
  • Utilizing advanced technology to enable customers to manage their energy use
  • Integrating carbon pricing into financial forecasting
  • Empowering employees to identify opportunities that drive environmental responsibility

Oversight, accountability and risk mitigation for the climate policy will be provided by an executive steering committee in partnership with the Board and company leadership.

In 2015, FirstEnergy announced plans to achieve a 90% reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from 2005 levels by 2045. To date, the company has reduced CO2 emissions by approximately 80% by implementing new technologies and retiring or transferring generation assets. The new goals represent a significant expansion of this target and reflect FirstEnergy’s transformation to a fully regulated utility.