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Sustainability and Green IT Services News for Technology Partners: 20 February 2024

February 20, 2024 by Joe Panettieri

Here is today’s sustainability news, research and analysis for technology partners; renewable energy and green IT service providers; management consultants; CIOs; chief sustainability officers (CSOs) and c-suite members.

A. Sustainable Technology, Talent, Partnerships and Green IT Alliances

1. Chief Sustainability Officer: Zurich Insurance promoted Linda Freiner to CSO from her previous role of group head of sustainability, according to her LinkedIn update.

2. Office Equipment and Peripherals: Canon Inc., the parent company of Canon U.S.A., was named a Leader in “IDC MarketScape for Worldwide Sustainability Programs and Services Hardcopy 2023 Vendor Assessment.” This report marks its first corporate assessment from the perspective of sustainability, Canon noted.

3. Gartner Honors Supply Chain Innovators: Gartner's Social Impact of the Year honoree was General Mills. The honor involved MealConnect, a food rescue technology that facilitates the safe and quick donation of food from grocery stores, convenience stores and food service locations to nonprofit food pantries and meal programs across the U.S. The other finalists included:

  • K-Electric for launching a groundbreaking meter refurbishment process that recycles about 25% of the company’s scrapped meters;
  • Lenovo for reducing e-waste by repairing 76.5% of failed warranty parts that can be reused for future PC repairs;
  • Microsoft for using data to cut its supply chain logistics emissions by 28%; and
  • Sysco for transitioning large portions of its fleet to electric vehicles.

4. Google Cloud Next Sustainability: The Google Cloud Next 2024 conference, set for April in Las Vegas, is expected to include. numerous sessions focused on sustainability.

5. AWS Partners: AWS is telling partners to develop Cloud Centers of Excellence to help achieve sustainability goals.

6. Data Center - Paris: NTT Ltd.'s Global Data Centers division will develop and operate its first data center campus in the Paris market, the company said. The move is part of the company’s $10 billion-plus investment in data center growth for fiscal years 2023-27, while driving towards achieving NTT’s net-zero emissions target for its own operations -- including sourcing 100% renewable energy by 2030, the company said. NTT Ltd. part of NT Data, is an infrastructure and services company serving 65% of the Fortune Global 500 and over 75% of the Fortune Global 100.

7. AI - Energy and Water Management: Itron, which develops technology to help utilities and cities to manage energy and water, is integrating Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service into its solutions. The result: "Business users within utility enterprises can effortlessly harness their data, utilizing natural language requests to tap into the most strategic datasets, thereby enriching decision-making processes," Itron said.

8. AI vs. Search Engines: By 2026, traditional search engine volume will drop 25%, with search marketing losing market share to AI chatbots and other virtual agents, Gartner predicted.

9. Partnership - Net Zero Energy Homes: GE Appliances and Savant Systems are partnering to launch a whole-home, connected solution that "allows consumers to take control of their energy efficiency and management," the two companies said.

B. Sustainability M&A, Investments, Funding and Green IT Business Launches

1. Investment: CDPQ has invested CAD 125 million in Levio, a digital transformation consulting company that has nearly 2,000 consultants working in 12 offices in Canada, the United States, Morocco, India and France.  Levio, backed by the funding, plans to pursue potential acquisitions.

2. M&A - Solar Power: CDPQ, a global investment group, has acquired an 80% stake in a solar power generation plant in Japan, alongside its portfolio company Shizen Energy. Financial terms of this particular investment were not disclosed.

3. M&A - Solar Energy Infrastructure: CuraScientific has acquired Sustainable Energy Group Inc., a provider of solar energy solutions that generates roughly $3.5 million in annual sales. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

4. M&A - Electricity and Consulting: ABB is acquiring SEAM Group, a provider of energized asset management and advisory services to clients across industrial and commercial building markets. ABB specializes in technology, electrification and automation. The company has 105,000 employees. SEAM has roughly 250 employees and supports more than 1 million energized assets for over 800 active clients operating across North America, EMEA and Asia. Key focus areas include commercial buildings, data centers, healthcare, manufacturing, and EV charging infrastructure. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

5. Complete M&A List: Here's our database of all M&A deals involving sustainability, green IT and renewable energy buyers, sellers and investors.

C. Regional and Global Sustainability Policies and News

1. United States - California Offshore Wind Concerns: California’s offshore wind farm plan and associated renewable energy targets for 2035 may be a tall order, Bloomberg reported.

2. United States - Colorado Solar Farm: Sun Bear, an enormous solar and battery storage installation in the Four Corners region of Colorado, will have  more than two million solar panels spread across 5,500 acres of land belonging to the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, part of the Weenuche Band of the Ute Nation, according to Ars Technica.

3. Africa - Solar Power Partnership: Africa Finance Corporation and SkyPower Global signed a Joint Development Agreement for a renewable energy project in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the organizations said.

D. Sustainability and Green Technology Conference Calendar

  1. Step Conference 2024: Earth Track (February 21-22, Dubai, UAE)
  2. Africa's Green Economy Summit 2024 (February 21-23, Cape Town, South Africa)
  3. Human Behavior and Sustainability Conference 2024 (February 22-23, Stanford University, California)
  4. Livable Cities, Collaborative Communities Conference 2024 (February 22-24, Thompson Rivers University, Canada)
  5. Distributech International 2024 Conference (February 26-29, Orlando, Florida)
  6. Complete Calendar of Sustainability Conferences

E. Previous Updates & Future News

  1. Did You Miss Yesterday's Daily Update?: Here is our previous sustainability, green IT and renewable energy news for technology partners.
  2. Future Updates: If you have news to share then please email me the details.
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