We’re encouraged by Ameren Missouri’s announcement that the energy company plans to invest in renewable energy and have net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The company’s “transformational change” involves closing carbon-emitting energy sources and replacing them with renewable sources.

As we have reported, carbon dioxide, or CO2, is one of the main greenhouse gases released by human activities — including the burning of fossil fuels — that contribute to climate change.

Ameren’s pledge is consistent with the objectives of the Paris Agreement and limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Ameren has operations in Missouri and Illinois. The company plans to cut its carbon emissions in half within the next 10 years — based on 2005 levels — and by 85% by 2040.

For Ameren Missouri, that means taking advantage of increasingly cheaper renewable energy options, such as solar and wind power, to add 3,100 megawatts of power production capacity through renewables by 2030.

The company wants a total of 5,400 megawatts from renewable energy sources by 2040.

Talk is cheap, and many companies are spewing words such as “ethical,” conscious,” green” and “sustainable.”

Large companies such as Amazon and Microsoft also have committed to becoming carbon neutral or carbon negative within the next 20 to 30 years.

Only action determines whether companies are truly interested in the environment or just corporate greenwashing — marketing to convince customers they are more eco-friendly than they really are.

We’re encouraged by Ameren’s announcement, and we believe they are committed to their plan. Time will determine how well they implement it.


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