Fujitsu on track to reduce environmental footprint

Fujitsu has disclosed the results of its efforts to achieve the targets of its 2013 Environmental Action Plan.
Written by Asha Barbaschow, Contributor

Back in 2013, Fujitsu set out to reduce its environmental footprint, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through IT, to design and deliver eco-efficient products to market, and to improve the environmental performance of its datacentres.

The Fujitsu Group Environmental Action Plan (Stage VII) covered 17 target items, formulated to cover the three years from fiscal 2013. Fujitsu has just released its efforts up until March 31, 2015, and said it was a year ahead of schedule.

"We have posted results equivalent to those targeted for the end of FY2015," the company said. "Accordingly, [we] have revised our targets upward."

Regarding its first category, "Contribution to Society by ICT: Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions", Fujitsu now hopes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 38 million tons, amended by a further 12 million tons, after the company almost hit its three-year target within two years. As of FY2014, the company had reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 24.83 million tons, comprised of 15.43 million tons in Japan alone.

"Deploying information and communications technology in an intelligent manner can improve the efficient use of energy and other natural resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions," the company said.

"Fujitsu believes IT has a major role to play in helping society address the world's environmental challenges.

"Toward achieving this target, we are placing priority on solutions which we provide to large numbers of customers and solutions for which we foresee expanded use by customers, such as cloud computing and mobile, as we engage in recognition of environmentally conscious solutions."

The company's "Resource Efficiency" item has also exceeded its initial forecast, aiming to now increase the resource efficiency of newly developed products by 35 percent -- up from its original goal of 20 percent -- in direct comparison to 2011.

According to the Japanese conglomerate, one of its server offerings boasts a 138.6 percent resource efficiency improvement over other like models, with an approximate 50 percent reduction in power consumption, as well as the complete elimination of volatile organic chemicals, and is completely lead-free.

Fujitsu also said that in FY14, it pushed ahead with its efforts to reduce the number of parts in newly developed products and to miniaturise products by reducing the size, thickness, and weight of parts and the space between parts.

Additionally, the tech giant set a new goal to improve the environmental performance of its major datacentres, in keeping with the recent expansion of cloud services and the increase in datacentre energy consumption.

"In fiscal 2014, the Fujitsu Group built its own Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) visualisation tool into its Eco-Management Dashboard, and commenced its operation from May 2015," the company said. "With this tool, each datacentre is not only able to calculate and display its energy utilisation status and PUE month-by-month, but can also compare its level of environmental consciousness across multiple datacentres."

In December last year, Fujitsu released a report highlighting that while Australian industries are using IT to achieve improved emissions management, they have stalled in the last two years and have therefore missed out on financial benefits.

The ICT Sustainability: Australian Benchmark report showed that from a survey of 200 Australian CIOs, many industries are now using IT to achieve greater efficiencies, and hence better emissions management. On an overall basis, the IT sustainability index (ITSx) was 51.7 for 2014, up from 50.1 reported in 2012.

Fujitsu said that more performance and efficiency improvements are needed in areas of IT in order to ensure that Australian sectors are gaining maximum returns from their environmental programs.

"From the last Benchmark Report, we can see that ICT Sustainability across Australian organisations has, by and large, stalled," William Ehmcke, director of connection research, which undertook the study said.

"Over the next two years, we hope to see some very real flow-on benefits stemming from better metrics and increased investment in technology enablement. These will have the capacity to drive wholesale improvement and value across private and public sector enterprises."

Last month, Fujitsu posted a 27 billion yen quarterly operating loss, compared to the same time last year, when the tech giant posted a 7.2 billion yen profit.

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