IT firms commit to fighting carbon

BT, Salesforce.com and 3PAR have given their corporate strategies a greener hue
Written by Tom Espiner, Contributor

Three companies in the technology space have announced carbon footprint reduction strategies within the past week.

Data storage company 3PAR announced on Monday that for every terabyte of "thin provisioning" capacity sold in 2007, the company will offset the emissions created to power and cool the storage.

3PAR says it will purchase enough carbon offsets to cover four petabytes of disk capacity, giving its customers the prospect of carbon neutral storage. The company will purchase the offsets from TerraPass, a retailer of greenhouse gas reduction programmes in the US.

Telecoms and IT services giant BT announced last Thursday that it would extend its Green Energy contract until 2010. The programme, a collaboration between BT, energy company npower and British Gas, has been running since 2004.

BT claims that the extension of the contract will save the amount of carbon released by the yearly electricity consumption of more than 300,000 households — roughly the population of Liverpool and Cardiff combined.

Under the terms of the contract, npower and British Gas Business will provide BT with one terawatt hour (TWh) of renewable energy and 1.2TWh of accredited combined heat and power per year.

BT also outlined its strategy to tackle climate change, and made a series of environmental pledges. The company claims that as it consumes 0.7 percent of the UK's entire electricity consumption, it is well placed to make a contribution to the process of reducing carbon emissions.

On-demand business services company Salesforce.com and its Salesforce.com Foundation announced on Tuesday last week its Earthforce programme — an initiative to create a carbon-neutral Salesforce.com in 2007.

The programme will work to neutralise the effects of Salesforce.com's corporate greenhouse gas emissions from its major areas of carbon consumption, namely its office locations, corporate travel and data centres.

Salesforce.com will purchase carbon offsets with the aid of Clean Air-Cool Planet, NativeEnergy and Conservation International.

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