Microsoft to erase its carbon footprint, past and future, in climate push

(Reuters News, 16 Jan 2020) Goal to remove existing carbon from the atmosphere sets Microsoft's climate goals apart from other corporate pledges which have focused on cutting ongoing emissions or preventing future ones.

Microsoft Corp on Thursday set a new ambition among Fortune 500 companies in addressing climate change, pledging to remove as much carbon as it has emitted in its 45-year history.

The focus on clearing carbon from the atmosphere sets Microsoft's climate goals apart from other corporate pledges which have focused on cutting ongoing emissions or preventing future ones.

"If the last decade has taught us anything, it's that technology built without these principles can do more harm than good," Chief Executive Satya Nadella said at a media event at Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, Washington.

"We must begin to offset the damaging effects of climate change," he said, adding if global temperatures continue to rise unabated "the results will be devastating."

The plan includes the creation of a "Climate Innovation Fund," which will invest $1 billion over the next four years to speed up the development of carbon removal technology.

The announcement by the world's largest software company reflects the rising profile of U.S. corporate action after President Donald Trump announced in 2017 his decision to pull the United States out of the Paris Agreement, the global pact to fight climate change.

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Reuters News, 16 Jan 2020: Microsoft to erase its carbon footprint, past and future, in climate push