Industry Sector: Information Technology & Services
NEWSWEEK Green Score: 82.5%
Environmental Impact: 78.8%
Environmental Management: 86.2%
Transparency & Disclosure: 83.0%
IBM has long been committed to environmental responsibility. The company employs roughly 426,750 people and had about $99.9 billion in revenue in 2010. In 1971, IBM formalized (PDF) a policy that was designed to put the company on the environmental forefront in all of its business activities. And in the intervening 40 years, many of the company’s; initiatives have truly been ahead of their time. For instance, IBM developed requirements (PDF) for secondary containment for underground storage tanks in 1979, while the EPA waited until 1985 to create the Office of Underground Storage Tanks, which was designed to develop regulatory programs for such tanks. The company has also been forward-thinking in terms of environmental disclosure. IBM released its first “IBM and the Environment” report in 1990, a full 10 years before the Global Reporting Initiative released its guidelines for environmental reporting. More recently, IBM established rules that all of its suppliers develop and sustain a corporate-responsibility and environmental-management system, and disclose their performance. In 2010, it became the first company to qualify four-socket servers for Energy Star requirements for servers—perhaps not surprising, as it was the charter member of Energy Star in the early 1990s.