For Immediate Release: December 21, 2020

SMUD earns an “A” for tackling climate change and sets ambitious new goals

SMUD was recognized for its leadership in corporate sustainability by global environmental non-profit CDP, securing a place on its prestigious ‘A List’ for tackling climate change. SMUD was recognized for its actions to cut emissions, mitigate climate risks and develop the low-carbon economy, based on reported data.

SMUD is one of a small number of high-performing companies out of 5,800-plus that were scored. Through significant demonstrable action on climate, SMUD is leading on corporate environmental ambition, action and transparency worldwide.

“We are proud of our progress toward addressing climate change,” said SMUD CEO and General Manager Paul Lau. “And I’m excited as we embark on our most ambitious goal yet to reach zero carbon by 2030. As we move towards those goals, we will engage our entire community in innovative solutions that benefit our entire region. From renewable energy to battery storage, clean transportation and electrification, we’re leading the way to a carbon-free economy.”

SMUD has a long history of environmental leadership. Since 1990, SMUD has halved its greenhouse gas emissions and has reduced the carbon intensity of our power mix, which is now, on average, 50 percent carbon-free.

SMUD’s goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2040 was adopted by the Board in 2018 and will meet or exceed the state by five years.

Recently, the SMUD Board of Directors signed an emergency climate declaration and SMUD is working toward a new ambitious goal of zero carbon by 2030.

Still in development, the plan relies on a combination of measures and calls for significant investment in electrification of cars and buildings; reducing energy consumption through energy efficiency and demand response; and, developing additional zero-emission generation resources and energy storage. The plan maximizes local air quality benefits with a priority to reduce carbon emissions in disadvantaged communities.

CDP’s annual environmental disclosure and scoring process is widely recognized as the gold standard of corporate environmental transparency. In 2020, over 515 investors with over US$106 trillion in assets and 150-plus major purchasers with US$4 trillion in procurement spending requested companies to disclose data on environmental impacts, risks and opportunities through CDP’s platform. Over 9,600 responded – the highest ever.

A detailed and independent methodology is used by CDP to assess these companies, allocating a score of A to D- based on the comprehensiveness of disclosure, awareness and management of environmental risks and demonstration of best practices associated with environmental leadership, such as setting ambitious and meaningful targets. Those that don’t disclose or provided insufficient information are marked with an F.

CDP CEO Paul Simpson said, “We extend our congratulations to all the companies on this year’s A List. Taking the lead on environmental transparency and action is one of the most important steps businesses can make and is even more impressive in this challenging year marked by COVID-19. The scale of the risk to businesses from climate change, deforestation and water insecurity is enormous, and we know the opportunities of action far outweigh the risks of inaction. Leadership from the private sector will create an ‘ambition loop’ for greater government action and ensure that global ambitions for a net zero sustainable economy become a reality. Our A List celebrates those companies who are preparing themselves to excel in the economy of the future by taking action today.”

The full list of companies that made this year’s CDP A List is available here, along with other publicly available company scores:

About CDP

CDP is a global non-profit that drives companies and governments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, safeguard water resources and protect forests. Voted number one climate research provider by investors and working with institutional investors with assets of US$106 trillion, we leverage investor and buyer power to motivate companies to disclose and manage their environmental impacts. Over 9,600 companies with over 50% of global market capitalization disclosed environmental data through CDP in 2020. This is in addition to the hundreds of cities, states and regions who have disclosed, making CDP’s platform one of the richest sources of information globally on how companies and governments are driving environmental change. CDP is a founding member of the We Mean Business Coalition. Visit or follow us on Twitter: @CDP to find out more.  

About SMUD

As the nation’s sixth-largest, community-owned, not-for-profit electric service provider, SMUD has been providing low-cost, reliable electricity for almost 75 years to Sacramento County (and small adjoining portions of Placer and Yolo Counties). SMUD is a recognized industry leader and award winner for its innovative energy efficiency programs, renewable power technologies, and for its sustainable solutions for a healthier environment. SMUD’s power mix is about 50 percent non-carbon emitting. For more information, visit