5 Kaspersky
eco-cases

How we are reducing the company’s carbon footprint

Measured in tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), a carbon footprint is the impact made on the atmosphere by individuals, food production, transport, manufacturing, corporate parties and even family barbecues – to name just a few. The modern corporate world is shifting towards accepting greater social responsibility for its output, as more and more large enterprises worldwide now include data on their direct greenhouse gas emissions in their company reports. Giants such as Apple, Microsoft, Gazprom, Evraz, and Polymetal are just a few of the well-known enterprises that are already publishing data on carbon dioxide emissions in their sustainable development reports.

Introduction

Tree planting

Kaspersky’s experts believe that comprehensive reporting on carbon emissions is set to acquire a global meaning for businesses worldwide. The team is already calculating its contribution to the production of CO2. For now, this only takes the main parameters of the company's business activities into account, but there are plans to include the full product life cycle: from initial development all the way through to the disposal of documents at the very end of the cycle.

American businesses are leading the way. Technology-intensive Amazon, for instance, is aiming for carbon neutrality by 2040. Microsoft has started developing and implementing technologies for third-party companies to predict their carbon footprint with the help of cloud solutions and data visualization, and to make their logistics more environmentally friendly. Meanwhile, Apple has come up with a carbon neutrality roadmap, declaring its intention to reduce its emissions to zero within the next 10 years.

All of the above implies the need for restructuring corporate processes. Reaching carbon neutrality in the short term is impossible, but it is possible to compensate for emissions through green activities such as reforestation, investing in alternative energy research, partnering with “clean” power plants, and using environmentally-friendly product recycling methods.

In line with this trend, Kaspersky is trying to gradually reduce the company's adverse effect on the environment by transferring offices and data centers to clean or alternative energy sources.

Corporate carbon footprint composition

таблица
  • Apple:
    • 72 %

      production

    • 17 %

      product use

    • 4 %

      logistic

    • 1 %

      corporate facilities

    • 1 %

      recycling

  • Facebook:
    • 72 %

      data centers

    • 9 %

      flights

    • 5 %

      offices

  • Kaspersky:
    • 59.9 %

      flights

    • 19.8 %

      servers

    • 9.7 %

      energy (offices)

    • 6.5 %

      offices

    • 4.0 %

      solid waste

chapter 1

Eliminating the transport footprint

Kaspersky is aiming to achieve zero waste – the lowest possible level of waste production. Our experts have calculated that its employees' business trips accounted for 60% of the company's CO2 emissions in 2019. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this rate plunged by 93%. Flying will become an option again sooner or later, so how can we eliminate our transportation footprint?

airplane

For one, we could hold fewer events that require travel, or arrange for our employees to use trains, as this mode of transport has a considerably lower carbon footprint.

Planes discharge immense volumes of CO2, and a passenger's footprint is directly linked to the class they are traveling in. A first-class passenger accounts for 770 kg of carbon emissions, a business-class ticket is worth 550 kg, and those flying economy are responsible for 220 kg each.

Cars are also a source of CO2, and you can cut the carbon footprint considerably by limiting their use and encouraging commuters to use bikes or public transport instead.

According to current estimates, the carbon footprint of public transportation is 14 times smaller than that of personal vehicles.

chapter 2
Ветрянная мельница

Using green energy

Cloud data processing centers normally include up to several thousand power-hungry servers. By 2030, data centers are expected to be consuming from 3-13% of the world's electricity. “All major cloud computing companies acknowledge the need to run their data centers as efficiently as possible in order to address economic and environmental concerns, and recognize that ICT consumes an increasing amount of energy,” Daniel Schien (Bristol University, UK) and Aled James point out in a paper titled “A Low Carbon Kubernetes Scheduler”.

Cutting energy consumption means reducing energy production. Kaspersky's computing capacities include 6,000 rented servers and 30 in-house ones. Each server is responsible for 0.45 kg of carbon emissions a year. Our plan is to gradually shift towards providers who use alternative sources of energy to power the servers, such as solar panels and wind turbines.

2.7 tons
of CO2 was “produced” by Kaspersky servers in 2019

Kaspersky's offices also consume electricity, which resulted in a discharge of 1.3 tons of CO2 in 2019. To cut power consumption, we use free cooling technology for climate control (using low external air temperatures to chill water in the air conditioner) and energy-efficient lighting. The buildings at headquarters, where most of our employees are based, are the company's property, which allows for flexibility when acquiring equipment. In other regions, we are free to select locations that comply with our carbon footprint reduction requirements.

Солнечные батареи
chapter 3

Making our offices more sustainable

In the future, Kaspersky may go carbon neutral, once it has transferred all of its offices and data centers to 100% renewable energy sources. For now, however, Kaspersky's office-based activities alone accounted for almost a ton of CO2 in 2019. Most of this volume is indirect and stems from the production of our office equipment, expendable materials and branded merchandise. To mitigate this footprint, the Kaspersky team uses electronic documentation wherever possible.

We are gradually making our handouts at events more environmentally friendly, reducing the use of HDDs, power banks and other hard-to-dispose-of items such as branded souvenirs, as well as avoiding disposable packaging. For instance, we are considering having our handouts and stationery produced from recycled materials.

waste collector
chapter 4

Sorting
our waste

By the time Kaspersky employees began returning to their offices following the first COVID-19 lockdown, we had installed special garbage bins and containers and prepared information materials. We are now also contracted to a recycling facility. In October 2020 Kaspersky began sorting waste at its head office.

"We found a company that ensures the sorted waste is recycled instead of being taken to a landfill," says Anastasiya Marentsova, CSR Manager at Kaspersky. "We visited the
waste-sorting warehouse, made sure that waste is transported to recycling facilities, and clarified the rules for sorting."

Waste disposal
chapter 5

Raising awareness and engaging employees in
eco-initiatives

trees

Employee engagement is crucial to the efficiency of carbon footprint reduction efforts. As such, we hold lectures and prepare information materials to inform employees and make change possible. Even the traditional Children's Day at head office in 2019 included an environmental agenda.