How do all our favorite Internet and computing companies — like Google, Apple, IBM, Microsoft — stack up when it comes to fighting climate change? You’ll soon find out in the latest release of Greenpeace’s IT ranking system called the Cool IT Challenge. Greenpeace plans to launch version 3 of its Cool IT leaderboard at our Green:Net event on April 29 in San Francisco.
Greenpeace launched the Cool IT Challenge in 2009, with the idea that IT firms are uniquely positioned to lead the business world in the fight against climate change using technology innovation, policy leadership and carbon footprint management tools. In particular, a study from The Climate Group has found that IT can reduce global carbon emissions across sectors by 15 percent, using various technology like the smart grid, smarter buildings, transportation, logistics and the Internet for dematerialization (replacing atoms with bits). (Green:Net will look more closely at these sectors).
Unfortunately, Greenpeace found last year that a lot of the IT firms were showing “inadequate leadership in tackling climate change.” In the inaugural leaderboard Greenpeace found that few IT firms scored more than 30 points out of a possible 100.
But Greenpeace has actually proven that it can influence the green moves of tech giants, including Apple, HP and Nokia, so expect some better results in the coming rankings. That’s the whole point of the system: to shed light on the tech companies’ climate change moves and to prod them to do better. (Greenpeace also released a report recently that issued a call to action for computing companies to include more clean power).
Greenpeace is saving the details for April 29, so come check out their announcement in San Francisco at the show.