Cisco will cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from its worldwide operations by 25 percent by 2012.
The pledge was made by John Cambers, the networking giant’s chairman and CEO at this week’s Cisco Live conference.
"To minimize our operational impact on the environment, we are curbing our company's GHG emissions and leveraging on networking technology to better manage environmental concerns," said Chambers.
Cutting its own emissions will allow Cisco to help its customers meet their own sustainability goals, said Chambers.
In 2007, Cisco's gross GHG footprint was 832,000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e), which includes emissions from Cisco's globally owned and leased facilities, vehicles and airline travel.
Cisco seeks to slash this figure to 543,000 tons of CO2e by 2012.
Cisco is a member of the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Climate Leaders program, involving collaboration between industry participants and the American government to develop comprehensive climate change strategies.
Besides EPA, Cisco has also partnered with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and sustainability consulting firm Domani to assess its global GHG footprint, validate measurements and establish ambitious, realistic goals.
Cisco is also piloting a software solution in the US to model the impact of various factors on carbon footprint, waste reduction targets and other goals. The tool is expected to forecast how rising energy costs will affect operations and expenditures, and model how some practices can cut energy use.
The company has also pledged to reduce business travel, which accounts for 27 percent of the its GHG footprint, through the use of collaboration technologies.
Cisco claims that it has reduced carbon dioxide emissions from air travel by at least 10 percent per employee, in line with its participation in the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI).