Azure Power (NYSE: AZRE), a leading solar power producer in India, published its Sustainability Report for 2019-20. Speaking on this occasion, Ranjit Gupta, Chief Executive Officer, Azure Power said, “We are pleased to release our second sustainability update in less than a year. At Azure, we are committed to evaluating our progress towards sustainability by not only continuing our focus on climate-related opportunities and risks but also evaluating and implementing best practices in social and governance aspects as well. Sustainability is the core of our value proposition and the essence of our business; so much that we go beyond our business objectives at times to choose the green, safe and sustainable pathway. Such decisions have paid off for us and they make better economic sense over the long-term.” Highlights from this FY’19 – 20 report include: Environmental Azure Power remains a net carbon neutral company and since inception, the company has helped avoid the release of 7.8 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents into the environment.
The company has expanded its environmental impact reporting to include scope 3 emissions and has increased its supplier engagement to effect cultural change by rewarding and penalizing suppliers to encourage the reduction of emissions. In FY’20, the company has achieved an additional 40% saving in water consumption per unit of electricity generated and is on track to becoming water neutral by 2023. Social Azure Power believes that employee diversity across gender and age are important to facilitate sustainable, profitable and responsible growth. The company strives to maintain a 1:1 ratio of wage for males and females. In FY’20, the company invested 16,040 man-hours of training in its workforce and offered skill development training to over 1,240 individuals in local villages. In FY’20, the company allocated INR 36 million for Corporate Social Responsibility and installed 21 smart classrooms and over 400 streetlights for communities as part of its CSR activities.
Over the last decade, Azure Power created over 18,000 job opportunities in the rural sector. In FY’20, the company hired a total of 3,462 workers from local communities, out of which 2,375 local workers were employed as module cleaning and grass cutting staff and a further 1,087 local workers were employed as security guards. Azure Power is an Equal opportunity employer that expressly forbids any discrimination against any employee or job applicant because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation including LBGTQ, physical or mental disability, or age. Governance All Azure Power projects comply with the World Bank’s Equator Principles and, in addition, the company conducted a total of 341 internal and 3 external audits in fiscal year 2020 with no significant incidents of non-compliance. In FY’20, the company enhanced its Health and Safety Policy, Environment Social and Governance Policy and implemented a Diversity and Inclusion Policy.
The company is in compliance with SEC, NYSE, SGX governance standards and strictly follows international governance policies on corruption, human rights, freedom of association, fair disclosure, whistle-blower and insider trading among others. The company’s Sustainability and CSR initiatives are overseen at the Board level. Two of nine of the Company’s Board members are female which have been added in the last year.