At Southern Company, we believe energy is opportunity. It helps people live more comfortable and connected lives, it fuels businesses that are shaping industries and it creates opportunity for future generations.
Through industry-leading research and development and a commitment to innovation, we are building the future of energy for the 9 million customers who depend on us, the communities we are privileged to serve and the industry we lead. Driven to realize what's possible, we're leaders who act and develop energy solutions for today and tomorrow, all while advancing our commitment to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Our employees, customers, and communities are our biggest partners and inspiration. For them, we're committed to a net zero future-a future with more options and less burdens on people and the environment. In 2018, Southern Company was among the first U.S. utilities to set a bold goal of net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050 - and we're on the right track. We have rapidly transitioned our system's generation fleet. In 2020, the Southern Company system reduced GHG emissions 52% from its 2007 benchmark levels, exceeding its intermediate 2030 goal to reduce GHG emissions by 50%. We continue to make smarter moves for our climate, like advancing R&D, energy efficiency, renewables and electric transportation. At Southern Company, we' re staying the course towards our vision.
Increases in severe weather, changing customer preferences and advancements in technology continue to transform our world and the way we provide energy to those we serve. We understand that having reliable energy is essential. That's why we are at the forefront of industry-leading innovation and are focused on making smart investments.
We provide the resilient, clean and economical energy our residential and commercial customers depend on. How? By developing around the full energy portfolio, upgrading and enhancing our infrastructure, protecting the electric grid from physical and cyberthreats, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and deploying distributed generation solutions through our subsidiary PowerSecure. We're always preparing for what's next.
At Southern Company, we keep our customers and communities at the center of everything we do. We understand their needs and go out of our way to prepare them for what's ahead. As a company founded on renewable energy more than a century ago, our mission remains the same - provide clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy. Our nearly 28,000 employees work hard every day to deliver smart solutions anchored in remarkable service, resilience and safety.
Our history of innovating and forming partnerships with business, government and research institutes make our progressive energy solutions a reality. From advancing energy storage to developing carbon capture technologies for future commercial application, we're on a mission to solve the energy challenges of tomorrow, today.
At Southern Company, our mission to provide clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy is about more than our bottom line - we believe every day is an opportunity to better the lives of those we serve. We're committed to supporting and improving our communities and environment at the local level and beyond, while conducting business with honesty, integrity and fairness. We create community value through energy, social, economic, and environmental progress. We are developing programs and partnerships across the community ecosystem in the areas of education, the arts and culture, health and human services, community and economic development, safety, and the environment. Together, we are investing in tomorrow's leaders and creating the change that supports customers and communities for generations to come.