2011 Green 15 winner: GE Energy
GE Energy developed REConnect, a portal to provide users with near-real-time information on wind turbine performance. In addition to maintaining the flow of clean wind-powered energy, the portal helps turbine owners and operators find the parts and services they need to keep their systems in top condition.
With REConnect, GE employees can keep tabs on the level of wind energy available and adjust as needed to meet consumer demand. Meanwhile, providers of green energy are able to scan for products and services, submit claims, and monitor fleet performance, thereby enabling them to plan and manage assets efficiently.
Delivering that much information and functionality to 1,500-plus employees and 500-plus users through a single portal is no easy task, nor is making the system flexible enough to support multiple types of turbines in various lifecycle stages. The task required integration with an array of GE's internal platforms, including identity management, ERP, product lifecycle management, document management, master data management, remote monitoring, and diagnostics.
2011 Green 15 winner: HCL Technologies
Intent on putting a dent in its carbon footprint, HCL Technologies built its own carbon-measuring and reporting system, having concluded that none of the offerings available on the market met its needs.
Dubbed Manage Carbon, the system integrates with various enterprise applications used by HCL, extracting data pertaining to energy consumption, fuel usage, travel, and so forth. Data is extracted from more than 100 campuses in and out of the company's home country of India, and is performed using a variety of methods, from database-level integration to Web-services-based integration to direct input.
The system is built primarily on open source technologies: JBoss is the JEE app server; Adobe Flex serves as the UI; jBPM handles workflow management; BIRT provides reporting; and MySQL handles database duties.
Armed with a complete view of its environmental impact, HCL has so far succeeded in reducing its carbon footprint by 15 percent.
2011 Green 15 winner: Hovnanian
Construction company Hovnanian launched a comprehensive IT overhaul comprising several green-oriented projects. At the heart of the initiative was a large-scale data center consolidation effort, though which Hovnanian IT virtualized its servers and storage, and employee desktops using Citrix HDX. The company also adopted power management software to power down PCs when not in use.
Hovnanian also invested in collaboration technologies to reduce excessive travel, including PolyCom videoconferencing, GoToMeeting for Webinars, Microsoft Communicator for IM, and Oracle Contact Center Anywhere for remote desktop support. The company developed e-learning courses, using Articulate and Adobe Captivate software, to supplement on-site instructor-led training.
All told, the initiative saved Hovnanian approximately $300,000 on server costs, $80,000 per year on electricity, and $1.2 million on travel costs, while reducing its carbon footprint by 775,000 pounds.
2011 Green 15 winner: Intel
Intel uses some 50,000 servers to perform silicon design and development tasks -- operations that grow increasingly complex each year, thereby increasing annual compute demand by 45 percent. Rather than piling more machines into its data centers, the company launched an initiative to squeeze more work out of its current fleet.