5 Ways McDonald’s is Making a Difference with Renewable Energy

November 07, 2019

McDonald's restaurant and solar panels animation

In McDonald's restaurants around the world, we’re committed to energy efficiency and renewable energy in a big way. The two U.S. investments we announced today, called large scale virtual power purchase agreements, are a first for us – here’s how virtual power will make a real difference:

Adding to the Power Supply

With this deal we’re investing in two projects, a wind farm and a solar farm, that will expand the amount of renewable energy available in the U.S. Once built and online, the total renewable energy generated by the projects will power communities in the U.S.

Windmills and solar panels

First Among U.S. Restaurants

The investment means McDonald’s is expected to add more renewable energy to the power supply than any other U.S. restaurant company to date – enough to equal more than 2,500 McDonald’s restaurants-worth of electricity. (Related: Learn how we’re working toward the most resource-efficient restaurants possible.)

Grid and homes and restaurants

Preventing Emissions

McDonald’s portion of these two renewable energy projects will help to prevent 700,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions – equivalent to planting more than 11 million trees or taking over 140,000 cars off the road for a year.


Progress on Climate Action Target

These investments in renewable energy are expected to move McDonald’s 16% closer to our Climate Action target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 36% from McDonald’s restaurants and offices.


Building on Success

With these projects, McDonald’s USA joins many other global markets in committing to  renewable energy. McDonald’s restaurants in Austria, France, Germany, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands and UK/Ireland are already at or close to sourcing 100% of the energy needed to power their restaurants from renewable sources as of 2018.

Committing to renewable energy is just one more way we’re using our Scale for Good.

McDonald's restaurants around the world

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