The share of electricity that PG&E provided to customers in 2020 that was emissions-free


Tons of Greenhouse Gases

avoided by PG&E to date



of electricity produced in 2020

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The Path to Drawdown: Electrical Utilities

Electric utilities play a critical role in the path to a world of net-zero emissions. They provide the connective tissue between key Drawdown solutions: renewable energy generation and energy storage. Through long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs), utilities enable renewable energy developers to secure buyers for their power and unlock project finance. Utility companies also often control electrical grids, putting them in the position to prioritize (or de-prioritize) the extent to which the grid is outfitted for the intermittency of solar and wind power generation. They're also the key actors in green-lighting the development of large-scale energy storage.

There are dozens of publicly-traded utilities on the New York stock exchange (such as Duke, NextEra, Dominion, Xcel, PG&E, etc.), and many of them are purchasing or developing renewable power capacities to provide clean electricity to customers across large regions. We use a stringent criteria to determine which utilities are significantly contributing to the low-carbon energy transition.

What We Want to See Improve

Reduce Direct and Indirect Emissions

We commend PG&E for their emissions reduction target for 2022. Their track record to date is impressive, but it only seems to track emissions avoided, not reduced. Avoided emissions means emissions that did not happen because of a company's products or services, while reduced emissions means an absolute decrease a company's operations. Looking at PG&E's reporting, their emissions haven't gone down in any convincing way. In fact, their scope 1 emissions have increased slightly between 2017 and 2020. We urge them to do as much as they can to reduce their absolute direct and indirect emissions. 

Phase Out Gas

While we commend PG&E for taking steps to make their natural gas operations more efficient, safe, and lower-emission, the fact that gas generation is a major part of their generation capacity means that PG&E won't be able to achieve substantial decarbonization unless these assets are phased out. We urge PG&E to develop plans to wind down or divest from their natural gas operations in the near future.

Related Green Energy Stocks in the Climate Index

View All Climate Index Stocks →

Allocated Company Description


Exelon Corp. (EXC)

Exelon is one of the largest US electric utility and operates nuclear, wind, solar, hydro plants. They’re a key player in decarbonizing the power sector


Sempra Energy (SRE)

Sempra Energy develops energy infrastructure and provides electricity and gas. Green utilities are the bedrock for developing more renewable energy


Companhia Energética de Minas Gerais (CIG)

CIG is one of the largest power utilities in Brazil that generates its electricity from renewable sources. They’re a model of how utilities should go green



PG&E is a public utility that offers electricity and natural gas to customers and growing their clean energy capacity. Green utilities are key to Drawdown


Avangrid, Inc. (AGR)

Avangrid generates most of its electricity through solar, onshore wind, geothermal, hydroelectric and biomass - an exemplar of green utilities


Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. (AQN)

Algonquin Power & Utilities operates renewable and clean energy assets throughout North America. These are key sources of energy in a decarbonized world


Enel Chile S.A. (ENIC)

Enel generates electricity from hydroelectric, solar, wind, and geothermal. They’re helping expand clean energy capacity


Montauk Renewables, Inc. (MNTK)

Montauk has facilities that generate renewable natural gas, a sustainable fuel. Electric utilities like Montauk are key to expanding clean energy capacity

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