HP publishes its complete carbon footprint, leading the industry in transparency

Chris Librie is the Director of Environmental and Health Initiatives, HP Sustainability & Social Innovation

Hewlett-Packard has been a leader for many years when it comes to corporate responsibility - it started with our company’s founders and has been woven into the fabric of our company’s identity. What we started 12 years ago by publishing a Global Citizenship Report has now become the norm across industries and businesses across the country.   

We take great pride in our longstanding efforts to minimize our environmental impacts as we strive to solve challenges in the communities where we live and work with new and innovative solutions.

Over a five-year period, HP has reduced the energy consumption of its product portfolio by an average of 50 percent.  And we’ve been hard at work, through recycling programs that we initiated in 1987, to reduce the amount of products that end up in landfills. Since 2002 alone, HP has recycled more than 2 billion pounds (907,000 tons) of HP electronic products and supplies.

And today, I’m proud to announce yet another HP first. Within this year’s Global Citizenship Report published on May 15, we announced the detailed results of the company’s work to outline our complete global carbon footprint across the entire value chain:

  • Supply chain—cradle-to-gate production, capital goods, upstream energy production, and transportation
  • Operations—business travel, employee commuting, facilities, auto and air fleet, and waste generation
  • Products—product use, end-of-life, buildings leased to others, and investments

This is something that hasn’t been done by any other company in our industry. HP is the first IT company to report all 15 categories of Scope 3 emissions and outline a complete carbon footprint as defined by the widely recognized World Resources Institute (WRI) standards. Not only that, but we’ve also engaged Ernst and Young to review the accuracy and completeness of our reported values. HP is already using the footprint data to refine our strategies and significantly reduce our carbon emissions worldwide. But what does this mean exactly?

We all know our data- and technology-hungry world is having a major impact on the environment through energy use. But you can’t manage what you can’t measure. What we’ve found through this detailed report is that it’s not so much the making of our products, but the use of our products that results in the most carbon emissions. So, we’re working to develop products with massive improvements in energy efficiency.

You’ve already seen our advances with the announcement of our Moonshot servers just a month ago. Engineered to address the IT challenges created by social, cloud, mobile, and big data, HP Moonshot servers use up to 89 percent less energy, take up 80 percent less space, and cost 77 percent less, compared to traditional servers.

Knowing our footprint also allows us to commit to new goals like reducing the CO2 emissions of our operations by another 20% by 2020. Achieving this goal will not only benefit our environment, but will help lower HP’s operating costs and energy-price risk, providing  significant business benefits. Our customers will also see a benefit from these actions in greater energy efficiency and lower environmental impact when they use HP products and services.

There is more to do. This work will also enable HP to identify additional areas of carbon emissions improvement in our supply chain and to set baselines that will help the company track, measure, and report on those improvements over time.