Not only companies, but also their suppliers must operate sustainably

By: STA Date: 2023. 01. 19. 11:20

In mitigating the effects of global warming, in addition to governments and the population, economic actors must also take a serious role. Companies dealing with information and data management can significantly contribute to the assessment of the direct and indirect environmental effects related to the company’s operations, thus reducing their carbon footprint – points out Iron Mountain, a leader in the field of information and data storage services.

(Photo: Pixabay)

According to the 2015 Paris UN Convention, the level of global warming should be reduced to at least 2, but ideally below 1.5 degrees Celsius by 2100. Achieving the goal of net zero emissions by 2050 would require a radical reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but the currently measured emission values show that we are still far from achieving the goal. Almost all sectors of the economy must play a role in avoiding the catastrophic rise in temperature and its many harmful consequences. To do this, they must significantly accelerate and prioritize their actions to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Emission reduction in-house

As storage infrastructure grows, an organization’s use of technology and digital assets can account for a significant portion of its carbon footprint. According to the International Energy Agency, data centers and data transmission networks are responsible for nearly 1% of all energy-related greenhouse gas emissions.
In addition, businesses replace their equipment – laptops, mobile phones and printers – more regularly than ever before, so they burden the environment even if they do not ensure the proper disposal of their office technology. E-waste is currently the world’s fastest-growing waste stream, with 50 million tonnes of e-waste generated annually, so businesses must also consider how they can reduce the amount of waste generated during digital transformation, taking into account the potential for reuse and recycling after equipment becomes obsolete. recycling options as well.

…and outside of company operations

Indirect emissions – i.e. the carbon dioxide emissions of companies’ supply chains, customers, investments, and even employees commuting to work – can account for more than 70 percent of a company’s carbon footprint. Organizations cannot therefore achieve net zero emissions without taking steps to reduce indirect emissions within their own operations and beyond. The first step is the accurate measurement and reporting of emissions, which can be followed by reducing one’s own carbon dioxide load.
Companies’ emission-related reports are crucial for financial institutions, as only measurable data can be used to draw the conclusions necessary to evaluate a company. In the case of indirect emissions, the preparation of reports is challenging and in many cases relies on estimates – as was also revealed in the European Central Bank’s climate risk stress test involving more than 100 euro area banks last year. In this case, for example, one bank estimated the indirect carbon dioxide emission for a corporate client at more than 7,000 tons per 1 million euros in revenue, while another bank estimated it at zero for the same client.
However, companies – regardless of industry and size – are exposed to ever-increasing pressure: regulatory authorities, investors and climate-conscious customers alike expect adequate information about companies’ indirect emissions and the steps they have taken to reduce them.

Organizations that play a key role in the company’s supply chain can help reduce the company’s carbon footprint by providing data and information about the exact, transparent and measurable results of their sustainability efforts

According to the Iron Mountain expert, the information and data storage industry needs to work even more actively with their customers to achieve ambitious net zero goals. Technology and data play a large and growing role in the indirect output of most companies. For this reason, they should choose a data storage and information management service provider that is not only committed to reducing emissions, but also offers the tools to do so. Sustainability reports should be about much more than compliance with the latest regulations.

In recent years, companies dealing with information and data storage have been providing their customers with more and more data on the emissions related to information management activities, which the companies can then use for their reports on the indirect environmental impact occurring in the value chain. Iron Mountain’s solutions, such as the Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) environmental benefits report, Green Shred or Green Power Pass, help customers in the accurate reporting of indirect emissions generated in their value chain. Whether it is the recycling or resale of electronic devices, or a data center powered by 100 percent renewable electricity, suppliers can really demonstrate with these solutions that they are playing a role in the fight against climate change and offer their customers solutions that will help them achieve a common world by 2050. we can achieve net zero emissions by force.

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