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8 Jun 2022

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New tools try to help organisations achieve their sustainability goals

For organizations of all sizes and sectors to move more quickly toward a net-zero carbon economy, common practices need to be transformed. This includes managing their environmental footprint more effectively, incorporating sustainability into their organizations and value chains, and making strategic investments. It begins with solving the data problem.

To address complex issues like sustainability, organizations need better access to centralized data intelligence that allows them to assess both business and ESG (environment, social, and governance) criteria to direct capital toward investment opportunities that balance both growth and impact.

Recently, we have seen that software vendors are trying to develop tools to help organizations achieve their green goals. Google, for example, has launched a page in which they explain how they use technology to become more sustainable. Innovative projects like RePlanIT are aimed at building sustainability dashboards for IT departments, purchasing managers, and sustainability officers in Europe. With the launch of its Cloud for Sustainability, Microsoft recently jumped into this market as well.

Organizations need better visibility into activities across their enterprise and value chain in order to effectively drive sustainability reporting, sustainability efforts, and business transformation. Collecting and connecting IoT data from devices using sensors - along with rich services at the edge and in the cloud - provides the foundation for monitoring and measuring activities at scale. Microsoft's Sustainability Manager, for example, will make it easier for organizations to record, report, and reduce their environmental impact by allowing increasingly automated data connections.

When organizations replace outdated tools, systems, or procedures with more efficient ones, they can reduce their environmental impact and increase their business value. By moving workloads to the cloud, we can decrease both carbon emissions and energy consumption. Emissions impact dashboards provide organisations with a visual representation of the emissions produced as a result of the use of - in this case - Microsoft cloud services.

Additionally, digital technologies help organizations improve transparency and accountability throughout their value chains, from raw materials to product creation to distribution. Data-first approaches can help organizations attain data integrity and gain the visibility they need to drive efficiencies, reduce emissions, and eliminate waste.

Photo credit: Shraga Kopstein

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