Raytheon Meets Green Goals with IT Help

by | Jul 1, 2009

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raytheonlogoRaytheon called upon its IT department to help the company meet its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 33 percent per dollar of revenue between 2002 and 2009 as a charter member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Climate Leaders program, according to a ComputerWorld article written by Rick Swanborg, president of ICEX and a professor at Boston University.

With approximately 90 percent of Raytheon’s greenhouse gas emissions coming from energy consumption, the company’s green IT strategy focused initially on the company’s data centers, where space and power constraints offered opportunities, according to the article.

As part of the project, Raytheon virtualized or decommissioned 1,300 servers and established common database services to reduce system acquisition, power and cooling costs, which enabled Raytheon to avoid building a major data center despite a 25 percent growth in capacity demand, according to the article. Swanborg said the green IT projects saved more than $11 million in 2008 and Raytheon exceeded its goal by realizing a 38 percent cut by 2008.

According to a recent Gartner study, the IT industry can expect virtualization to dramatically reduce energy use and hardware outlays. A key finding of an Aberdeen study indicates that virtualization continues to lead the list of top strategies employed by best-in-class companies to jumpstart their green IT initiatives.

Swanborg said Raytheon now has a new IT project management process that includes power reviews to ensure that project teams estimate the power consumption of new systems and work in advance to achieve reductions. IT also helps other Raytheon functions consider how technology can help them operate more efficiently through automated energy management, reduced travel and commuting, or progress toward a paperless office.

“By enveloping initiatives like data center virtualization within a broader sustainability strategy, Raytheon’s green IT program represents more than a short-term means of saving money,” said Swanborg. “Raytheon’s overarching commitment to reducing its environmental impact provides a more compelling case for stakeholders than a technology-focused program.”

As another example of the company’s drive toward sustainability, Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems (SAS) business announced earlier this year that it is participating in the Cool Planet Project and will begin reporting GHG emissions. The company has saved 7.9 million kilowatt hours of energy by participating in Southern California Edison’s energy management programs.

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