Gartner analyst Simon Mingay, in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, has tried to determine which vendors were tackling climate change within their own company, as well as which ones were delivering green products and services to their customers.
He sent an 82-question survey to 24 vendors worldwide. A number of key vendors declined to participate, including Microsoft, Oracle and Sun.
Of those vendors that did respond, IBM stood out in virtually every category, particularly when it came to its internal green initiatives. HP was also high on the list, with good overall performance.
Cisco could be doing better, Mingay said. "There's a little bit more talking than doing," he said. Other companies that fall into the middle ground include Nortel, Dell and Lenovo.
Surprisingly, Google did not score well in the survey. The company has more than 1 million servers and therefore is a huge energy user, but it has no greenhouse gas targets, isn't very transparent about its green strategy and is not using much in the way of renewable energy, Mingay said. "We expected a higher score," he said.
Looking at global companies, British Telecom scored the highest of any vendor, while Ericsson and Fujitsu also demonstrated a high level of greenness.
The results of the survey were based on answers provided by the companies, and there was no attempt to verify the information, Mingay cautioned.
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