Enterprise software industry leader SAP intends to reduce total greenhouse gas emissions from its worldwide operations by 51% by 2020 — the equivalent of 513,000 metric tons of CO2 — as compared to the 2007 baseline it has established. Doing so would bring emissions down to the 250,000-metric ton level of 2000.
The GHG abatement drive is part of a broader, organization-wide sustainability initiative that extends out to customers and supply chain partners by offering a range of information technology and services designed to help organizations reduce their carbon footprint.
SAP is using software solutions it has developed to monitor and manage its direct and indirect CO2 and GHG emissions, as well as those of its supply chain partners according to the criteria set out in the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, an internationally used carbon accounting tool.
Building Sustainability into the Organization
SAP’s business software business extends across more than 82,000 customers in more than 120 countries. Taking a high-level, top-down approach to sustainability and GHG emissions, SAP has established “a cross-functional sustainability organization” responsible for all aspects of its sustainability drive.
Peter Graf, a 13-year SAP veteran, has been appointed the company’s first chief sustainability officer. Graf leads a global team charged with realizing the goals of SAP’s sustainability programs – including key social, economic, and environmental programs – and creating solutions for use internally and across its supply chain and customer base. He will report directly to SAP executive board member Jim Hagemann Snabe, according to an SAP media release.
SAP undertook its first GHG inventory last year. Management will report on the organization’s sustainability performance and results each year in its annual corporate sustainability report.
Direct GHG Abatement
SAP has provided specific examples of how it intends to reduce its carbon footprint. These include:
- Reducing company car fuel consumption and office printing/paper usage along with installing high-definition videoconferencing facilities in offices worldwide;
- Purchasing renewable power;
- Consolidation and increasing use of virtualization in data centers;
- Greater use of virtual events; and
- Purchasing GHG offsets for indirect ‘Scope 3′ emissions that remain.