Making the environment better means reducing our carbon footprint as we build, strengthen and modernize the energy grid of the future. We are integrating industry best practices as we develop a comprehensive climate strategy that aligns with our regulated, customer-focused distribution and transmission business. A strong, secure and sustainable electric system relies on a modernized grid and advanced technologies that improve the environmental performance of our operations while simultaneously enhancing system resiliency and service reliability for customers.
We are excited to report we are on track to achieve our aggressive goal of reducing CO2 emissions companywide by at least 90% below 2005 levels by 2045. At the end of 2018, we had already reduced companywide CO2 emissions by 62% compared to the 2005 baseline. When we fully separate from our competitive generation subsidiary, we anticipate our carbon reduction to reach 80%. We believe our 90% CO2 reduction target is in line with the ambition of the 2015 Paris Agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Our 62% CO2 reduction from 2005 levels represents approximately 59 million tons of emissions. We achieved this by:
Retiring 28 units at 12 coal-fired power plants with a total capacity of 5,753 MW
Retiring six units at four oil- or gas-fired power plants with a total capacity of 197 MW
Selling 26 units at 10 oil- and gas-fired power plants with a total capacity of 1,795 MW
Selling one unit at a fossil fuel-fired plant with a capacity of 136 MW
Reducing generation output at our remaining power plants due to market conditions
Upon FES’s emergence, FirstEnergy will be legally separated from FES and its three fossil fuel-fired generation facilities. This will result in further reductions to FirstEnergy’s CO2 emissions. At that time, we anticipate our carbon emissions will be 80% below our 2005 baseline—placing us well ahead of schedule to achieve our goal of 90% reduction in CO2 by 2045. We will continue to evaluate our goals for our regulated generation portfolio and assess opportunities to further reduce CO2 emissions.
Our stakeholders want to know how climate-related issues and risks could impact our company—and they want to learn more about our preparations for a potential low-carbon economy. To address these and other questions, we prepared a Climate Report in 2019 that analyzes the possible effect of a two-degree Celsius global climate scenario on FirstEnergy. Two-degree global climate scenarios set a global CO2 emissions trajectory consistent with limiting an average global temperature increase to a range of no more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels with a certain probability. FirstEnergy’s 2DS analysis informs our strategic planning efforts and helps us better understand how our business fares in a low-carbon future.
Our investments in the distribution and transmission network are preparing the electric grid to integrate and incorporate an evolving energy landscape that includes renewable and distributed energy resources, a key component of a lower-carbon future. Over the past five years, we have connected our network to 43 renewable energy projects with nearly 400 MW of generating capacity (130 MW wind and 260 MW solar). We will continue to fully transform the grid to integrate emerging renewable and distributed energy resources and respond to a rapidly changing energy mix.