Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Report
Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) publishes an annual Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Report. MGE is committed to helping customers, investors and other stakeholders better understand our strategies, risks, challenges and opportunities as we transition to a more sustainable future. The 2020 report features information about MGE's corporate strategy and climate-related matters, safety and operations, customer and employee engagement, governance and oversight. Highlights include:
- MGE’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including fulfilling its commitment to customers while providing safe and reliable service and contributing to local relief efforts.
- Analysis of the company's net-zero carbon goal by the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. Dr. Tracey Holloway compared MGE's goal to the modeled pathways for the electricity sector in industrialized nations to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The study determined MGE's goal is in line with or more aggressive than these model benchmarks for climate solutions.
- MGE’s globally recognized strategies for deep decarbonization. Consistent with the latest climate science, MGE expects to achieve carbon reductions of at least 65% by 2030 and net-zero carbon by 2050.
- Recent development of clean energy projects equating to an expected 650% increase in owned renewable capacity when all projects come online, including 100 megawatts (MW) from the Badger Hollow Solar Farm and 50 MW from Two Creeks Solar, and a number of solar projects in the Madison, Wisconsin, area.
- MGE's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and efforts to advance diversity in the energy industry by partnering with local organizations on career-oriented programming for area youth.
- MGE's record of top-ranked electric reliability and its employee-led safety initiatives, resulting in record-setting safety achievements.
- The company's efforts to help improve the quality of life for those it serves by giving back to the community through the MGE Foundation, corporate giving and employee volunteerism.
Targeting Net-Zero Carbon Electricity
MGE is working to achieve deep decarbonization, consistent with current climate science, as quickly and as cost-effectively as we can. Our carbon reduction goals reflect our vision and signal our direction but do not determine our pace. We’ve said since introducing our clean energy and carbon reduction goals—if we can go further faster, we will.
Consistent with the Paris Agreement on climate change, we committed in November 2015 to reducing carbon at least 40% by 2030 (from 2005 levels). In May 2019, MGE announced a goal of net-zero carbon electricity by 2050, which aligns with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its assessment of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Consistent with the latest climate science, we expect to achieve carbon reductions of at least 65% by 2030.
"MGE is committed to corporate responsibility, to environmental leadership and to a more sustainable energy future for the benefit of our customers, investors and the broader community," said Chairman, President and CEO Jeff Keebler. "By working with customers to decarbonize our energy supply, advance energy efficiency and electrify transportation, we can meet our goal of net-zero carbon by 2050. If we can go further faster through the use of new technologies and partnerships with our customers and communities, we will.”
MGE's commitment aligns with the goals of the U.S. Mid-Century Strategy (MCS) for Deep Decarbonization. The MCS is the U.S. strategy for meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement. Both the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the MCS rely on:
- Decarbonizing electric generation
- Using energy efficiently
- Electrifying other energy uses, including transportation.
These are the strategies MGE is pursuing and will continue to pursue to achieve deep decarbonization.
EEI ESG/Sustainability Reporting Templates
To advance further transparency and disclosure in company operations and governance, MGE is participating in the Edison Electric Institute's (EEI) environmental, social, governance and sustainability-related reporting templates. The quantitative template
includes data related to MGE's energy portfolio (generation and capacity), emissions, capital expenditures, and human and natural resources. The qualitative template
includes information related to our company's management and oversight of and strategies for transitioning toward deep decarbonization and greater sustainability. These templates are voluntary and industry-specific.
"MGE has ambitious carbon reduction goals and is advancing a more sustainable future through renewable generation, the electrification of transportation and increased engagement with our customers around energy efficiency. These reporting templates offer one more way for us to share relevant information with our investors," Keebler said.
EEI members represent U.S. investor-owned electric companies.
MGE Energy is committed to transparency. The company has reviewed the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), performed an analysis of its disclosures relative to the TCFD recommendations and determined that MGEE's disclosures are consistent with and responsive to the TCFD guidance and recommendations.
Green Masters Program
MGE voluntarily participates in two statewide benchmarking programs, achieving the highest designations from both programs.
In 2020, MGE earned the Green Master designation from the Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council for the seventh consecutive year. This voluntary, independent benchmarking program, which evaluates sustainability actions in nine key areas, recognizes the top 20% of participants as a Green Master.
In 2017, MGE expanded the scope of its renewed five-year contract with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for its Green Tier certification, which recognizes environmental leadership. MGE's primary goal in the expanded contract is to cover all MGE operations under the company's Environmental Management System, or EMS. An EMS is a continuous improvement process that evaluates, prioritizes and manages environmental risks.
MGE was the first electric utility to take part in the Green Tier pilot program and remains the only electric utility, and one of only six Wisconsin companies, to be certified at the highest level of Green Tier.