Following on the heels of the Green Electronics Ranking, today Greenpeace released the fifth version of its Cool IT Leaderboard. This ranks and evaluates global IT companies on their leadership in the fight to reduce global carbon emissions.
Greenpeace started evaluating ICT brands through its Leaderboard in 2009, primarily to identify those companies that are making an effort to drive change in the energy sector. The Leaderboard also examines how the companies use their influence to change government policies regarding clean energy.
According to the report: “The fifth version sees a steady increase in the quantity and strength of energy solutions offerings from many companies such as Cisco, IBM, Ericsson and Fujitsu, we also see a significant reduction in policy advocacy to change the rules to drive investment in clean technology and renewable energy deployment.
The rankings in order of great to pretty good (since all these companies are praisworthy) are as follows:
The companies in the Leaderboard were evaluated in three key areas:
- Efforts to offer economy-wide technological climate solutions that contribute to global greenhouse gas reductions
- Initiatives to reduce their own global warming emissions
- Active engagement in political advocacy and support for science-based climate and energy policies
Each of these had a separate score that made up a portion of 100 points. For example, climate solutions make up 40 points out of 100 and these 40 points are made up of several sub-criteria like current savings calculation (20 points) and public metrics (10 points). Through this method, they calculated the company with the highest points in terms of overall energy energy savings, and with its continued investments in renewable energy, Googleranked the highest.
Softbank has done a lot of work on the policy front, calling for a transition away from nuclear power. Policy work was one of the key reasons the company made the Leaderboard for the first time.
Google, Cisco, and Dell all stood out for sourcing a minimum of 20 percent renewable energy
Greenpeace’s goal with this ranking is to encourage companies to source energy efficient ICT products from these leading companies. As the ICT supply chain is heavily concentrated in Southeast Asia, there is a significant amount of ‘dirty energy’ that goes into the manufacture of these products. The Leaderboard also tracks those companies that report high emissions in their supply chains and are working to manage them. The highest scoring companies in this criterion include, HP, Dell and Sharp.”
Greenpeace is particularly concerned about the IT sector due to the rapid expansion of telecom infrastructure and data centers that power the cloud. These are mostly run with energy derived from non-renewable sources such as coal. Their recent campaign against Facebook highlights this issue. Many brands are beginning to take energy sourcing seriously and are taking steps to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and have made the commitment towards using renewable sources for their electricity needs.
Image Credit: Greenpeace © Cool IT Leaderboard, ver. 5.
Acknowledgement: Thanks to Shayna Samuels, Ripple Strategies.