Microsoft said on Thursday (January 17) it would become “carbon negative” by 2030 as part of a ramped-up effort by the US tech giant to combat climate change.
Carbon negative means that a company is removing more carbon than it emits each year.
The company said the move would by 2050 remove from the environment all the carbon emissions it has created since it was founded in 1975.
Microsoft, one of the world’s most valuable companies, said in a blog post that it has been carbon neutral since 2012 but that “neutral is not enough to address the worlds needs” to fight the effects of climate change.
Carbon neutrality is a term used to describe the action of organizations, businesses and individuals taking action to remove as much carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as each put in to it. The overall goal of carbon neutrality is to achieve a zero-carbon footprint.
Several tech companies, including Google and Apple, have committed to carbon neutrality and Amazon has said it would meet that goal by 2040.
The British-based utility Drax said last month it would become the first company in the world to be carbon negative, or removing more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than it creates, by 2030.
Microsoft said it would invest $1 billion in a new “climate innovation fund” for technology for carbon capture and removal.
The move comes amid growing concerns that climate change is accelerating, and data showing the past decade was the hottest on record.
“While the world will need to reach net-zero, those of us who can afford to move faster and go further should do so,” Microsoft said of its initiative.
“Reducing carbon is where the world needs to go, and we recognize that its what our customers and employees are asking us to pursue. This is a bold bet – a moonshot – for Microsoft. And it will need to become a moonshot for the world.”