How IBM Lowered Energy Consumption by 4.5% Last Year

(Image Credit: IBM)

by | Jul 3, 2020

How IBM Lowered Energy Consumption by 4.5% Last Year

(Image Credit: IBM)

IBM reported reducing its energy consumption by 4.5% in 2019, and that electricity from renewable sources accounts for 47% of their total consumption.

The multinational tech corporation previously set internal targets for key environmental performance indicators such as energy conservation, procurement of renewable electricity, and carbon dioxide emissions reduction.

Specifically, they seek to conserve energy that is equivalent to 3% of their annual energy consumption on a yearly basis, procure 55% of their worldwide electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2025, and reduce the operational CO2 emissions associated with their energy consumption 40% by 2025 against a 2005 baseline adjusted for acquisitions and divestitures.

Data for 2019 showed that IBM’s total energy consumption last year went down 4.5% to approximately 4.5 million megawatt-hours compared to 2018. The corporation credits 1,660 energy conservation projects at nearly 230 locations for avoiding 136,000 MWh of energy and the emission of an associated 47,000 metric tons of CO2. Those projects also saved $14.4 million in expenses, according to IBM.

“These savings resulted from our continued, across-the-board focus on energy demand, energy efficiency, and the implementation of standardized, global energy conservation strategies at our facilities,” the company said.

IBM specified that its Smarter Buildings solution, an internally-developed analytics and internet of things application, was deployed at 25 of the corporation’s campuses globally, covering 190 buildings and nearly 25 million square feet of floor space.

“In 2019, this solution helped IBM avoid the consumption of 11,000 MWh of energy with associated savings of $800,000,” the tech corporation reported.

Incentivizing Renewable Energy Generation

Renewable electricity is also a main focus. Their strategy involves purchasing renewable energy that’s generated in the grid regions where their electricity consumption occurs.

“This approach enables IBM to actually consume the renewable electricity it purchases when the time of its generation and our consumption coincides, and creates incentives for our electricity suppliers to increase their renewable electricity generation in the places where we actually have demand for such power,” the company said. “IBM does not rely upon the purchase of unbundled renewable energy certificates to offset its consumption of electricity from fossil fuels.”

Last year IBM says it increased the use of renewable electricity by 18% so that electricity from renewable sources now accounts for 47% — 1,790,000 MWh — of their total electricity consumption.

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