On the street to 2030: Our 2022 Environmental Sustainability Report

At the moment, Microsoft revealed the 2022 Environmental Sustainability Report. 2022 was a 12 months of innovation, partnership, and progress towards our commitments, all whereas serving to our prospects, companions, and the world transfer towards a extra sustainable future. You may learn the foreword under and the discover the report in its entirety right here.

Enabling sustainability for our firm, our prospects, and the world

2022 marked the sixth warmest 12 months in historical past. Excessive climate brought about devastating droughts, wildfires, famine, floods, and warmth waves with alarming frequency. We felt the results of local weather change like by no means earlier than, and because the planet warms, we’ll proceed to see and really feel the destructive impacts on ecosystems and communities around the globe. The newest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Local weather Change (IPCC) underscores the severity of the local weather disaster, and the pressing want for world collective motion. Significant local weather motion requires a permanent dedication from each authorities and enterprise, with the non-public sector enjoying an more and more necessary function within the transition from pledges to progress. As we replicate on the seriousness of the local weather disaster, now we have expanded our ambition to satisfy this pressing local weather want by investing in a broad vary of initiatives, applied sciences and approaches that help a web zero future.

Microsoft’s method to addressing the local weather disaster begins with the sustainability of our personal enterprise. In 2020, we made a daring set of commitments: to be a carbon destructive, water optimistic, zero waste firm that protects ecosystems – all by 2030. Three years into this journey, we stay steadfast in our dedication. 2022 was a reminder that to mitigate essentially the most extreme impacts of local weather change, our commitments want to increase past our 4 partitions, and we should proceed to speed up investments that can allow progress for many years to come back.

In 2022, we launched Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability, a complete suite of enterprise-grade sustainability administration instruments. We additionally helped to advance a set of worldwide sustainability initiatives that purpose to profit each individual and group on the planet. These embody accelerating the provision of recent local weather applied sciences by way of our Local weather Innovation Fund, strengthening our local weather coverage agenda, serving to to develop a extra dependable and interoperable carbon accounting system, advocating for skilling applications to broaden the inexperienced workforce, and dealing to allow a simply transition for the susceptible populations of the worldwide south.

We consider that Microsoft has an necessary function to play in creating and advancing new local weather options, but additionally acknowledge that the local weather disaster can’t be solved by any single firm, group, or authorities. The worldwide neighborhood wants partnerships, new improvements, insurance policies, and world dedication to make sure a wholesome future for all.

Getting our personal home so as

Microsoft’s personal sustainability is our first sphere of affect, and we stay centered on getting our personal home so as and delivering on our 2030 commitments. We made formidable commitments in 2020 and we knew that progress wouldn’t at all times be linear. These commitments are rooted in science and take the required steps to guard our ecosystems and stop essentially the most extreme impacts of local weather change. We’re firmly centered on reaching our 2030 commitments and making the suitable long-term investments that help the sustainability of our enterprise for many years to come back. Along with our long-term focus, it’s necessary to pause and consider our progress in 2022.

In 2022, our enterprise grew by 18% and our total emissions declined by 0.5%. This partially is a results of a discount in our direct operational (Scope 1 and a pair of) emissions by 22.7%. At Microsoft, Scope 1 and a pair of emissions account for lower than 4% of whole emissions, whereas oblique emissions, or Scope 3, account for greater than 96%. Our Scope 3 reported emissions elevated barely in 2022, by 0.5%, regardless of a 25% improve in bought items and providers resulting from enterprise development. The extra optimistic outcomes in 2022 are the results of enhancements in our operations, real-time system telemetry-based measurement, renewable vitality investments, sustainable aviation gasoline (SAF) purchases, and procurement of unbundled renewable vitality certificates (RECs).

Whereas we proceed to work to scale back our Scope 1 and a pair of emissions to close zero, Scope 3 is the final word decarbonization problem. It necessitates the coevolution of finest practices for enterprise, expertise, and coverage amongst hundreds of worldwide stakeholders. Once we made our carbon destructive dedication in 2020 it wasn’t only a problem to help the sustainability of our enterprise, it was additionally an invite to the world to take part on this journey, translating ingenuity into motion, and motion into impression. Along with our carbon destructive dedication, we’ve additionally made encouraging progress towards our 2030 commitments in water, waste, and ecosystems:

Water optimistic

We contracted for replenishment tasks which can be estimated to supply greater than 15.6 million m3 in volumetric water advantages, rising our working whole of replenishment tasks to 35 million m3. Moreover, we supplied greater than 850,000 individuals with entry to scrub water and sanitation options, together with 163,000 in Brazil, India, Indonesia, and Mexico.

Zero waste

We elevated our reuse and recycle charges of all cloud {hardware} to 82% and proceed to tempo towards our 2030 reuse and recycle aim of 90%. We additionally decreased single-use plastics throughout all Microsoft packaging to three.3% and are on observe to eradicate their use by 2025. In whole, now we have diverted 12,159 metric tons of stable waste from landfills.

Ecosystem safety

We proceed to keep up our dedication to guard extra land than we use. In 2022, 12,000 of the over 17,000 acres of contracted land have been formally designated as protected. The quantity of land protected in 2022 exceeds the roughly 11,200 acres of land we at the moment use.

Amplifying our impression and serving to our prospects obtain extra

Our second sphere of affect is buyer sustainability. As a expertise firm, now we have a job to play with the hundreds of company prospects who put their belief in Microsoft expertise. Nearly all of our prospects have already made a local weather pledge and Microsoft is working to assist them transfer from pledges to progress.

Whereas Microsoft’s emissions footprint is a tiny share of worldwide emissions, we even have a job to play in serving to cut back or take away the opposite 99.97% of worldwide emissions. It’s necessary that our method to sustainability extends past our personal 4 partitions and helps the sustainability wants of our prospects.

Firms can solely handle what they will measure, and Microsoft is dedicated to serving to our prospects measure their environmental impression in a well timed and correct method. In June 2022, we launched Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability, a complete environmental sustainability administration platform that features Microsoft Sustainability Supervisor. These new digital instruments can interoperate with just about any enterprise system and unify knowledge intelligence for organizations at any stage of their sustainability journey. Sustainability Supervisor allows organizations to report, report, and cut back their Scope 1, 2, and three emissions.

Azure prospects additionally benefited from vital upgrades to the Emissions Influence Dashboard (EID), which helps prospects to grasp the emissions impression that outcomes from their use of the Microsoft Cloud. The EID estimates Microsoft’s direct and oblique emissions associated to a buyer’s cloud utilization, in addition to the emissions prospects have prevented by working workloads within the cloud reasonably than on-premises.

In 2022, we additionally launched a preview model of the Microsoft Planetary Laptop to allow prospects to measure, monitor, and subsequently to handle ecosystems that could be affected by their operations, and to make necessary choices associated to local weather danger. The Planetary Laptop attracts on greater than 60 petabytes of open-source geospatial knowledge. This knowledge, when mixed with the analytic capabilities of our AI for Good Lab, delivers a brand new stage of planetary insights to companies and governments around the globe.

Enabling and supporting a extra sustainable world

Lastly, our third sphere of affect is to impression world sustainability. Simply because the attain of Microsoft expertise extends to virtually each nation on this planet, so ought to the impression of our sustainability applications.

In November 2022, the world’s local weather leaders convened for COP27. There have been necessary conversations at COP27 centered on the uneven impacts of local weather change and the way the least developed international locations on this planet are disproportionately affected. For instance, the nations of Africa collectively account for lower than 5% of worldwide emissions however have skilled way over their share of the destructive impacts of local weather change. At Microsoft, we’re centered on local weather insurance policies and applications that can have a optimistic impression on all eight billion inhabitants of planet Earth.


Microsoft is deeply dedicated to utilizing our voice to affect sustainability insurance policies around the globe. We help public coverage initiatives to speed up carbon reporting, discount and elimination, the transition to scrub vitality, water entry and stress discount, and the flexibility to measure, handle, and defend ecosystems. In 2022, we additional dedicated to shaping public coverage by releasing coverage briefs on carbon and electrical energy.

Carbon measurement and the Carbon Name

In February 2022, Microsoft, ClimateWorks Basis, and over 20 main organizations launched an necessary new initiative referred to as the Carbon Name. The target of this program is to unify the world round a carbon accounting system that’s extra dependable and interoperable. ClimateWorks Basis is constructing this program to a world scale. The Carbon Name now has over 80 signatories, and launched its preliminary roadmap at COP27.

Local weather Innovation Fund

We consider that innovation is a important part to fixing the local weather disaster, and that the funding of capital performs an necessary function in accelerating the provision of recent options. Microsoft is investing in accelerating local weather innovation by way of our $1 billion Local weather Innovation Fund (CIF). We put money into modern applied sciences and enterprise fashions which have the potential for significant, measurable local weather impression by 2030. For the reason that founding of the CIF in 2020, Microsoft has allotted greater than $600 million into a world portfolio of greater than 50 investments, together with sustainable options in vitality, industrial, and pure programs.

Africa knowledge lab

In November, we introduced an enlargement of our AI for Good Lab into Egypt and Kenya, constructing a brand new group of knowledge scientists on the bottom in Africa that can work to enhance local weather resilience. The work of those knowledge labs shall be knowledgeable by a brand new Africa AI Innovation Council comprised of representatives from main African organizations.

Sustainability abilities

Delivering on the ambition of the Paris Settlement would require a world initiative centered on the proliferation of sustainability abilities all through the labor market. In November 2022, Microsoft and BCG launched a brand new report, Closing the Sustainability Expertise Hole: Serving to Companies Transfer from Pledges to Progress. This report reinforces the necessity for employers and governments to put money into upskilling the present workforce by way of studying initiatives centered on sustainability data and abilities, to arrange the subsequent technology for sustainability jobs of the longer term. Microsoft is working with companions to develop and share new sustainability studying supplies to speed up the event of the sustainability workforce of the longer term.

A decade of innovation and decisive motion

As we glance towards 2030 – and past – we stay optimistic about our collective skill to decarbonize the worldwide economic system whereas persevering with to develop and prosper as a world neighborhood. We are going to proceed investing in three key areas that can allow the size of sustainability options wanted to handle the local weather disaster:

  1. Advancing AI options for better local weather impression
  2. Accelerating the event of sustainability markets by way of funding
  3. Creating instruments that advance emissions measurement and compliance

This shall be a decade of innovation and decisive motion, from increasing the usage of AI to handle sustainability to forging new private and non-private sector partnerships. To maneuver from pledges to progress, we can’t be deterred by near-term challenges, and should stay centered on creating modern new options and, in lots of circumstances, accelerating our actions. At Microsoft, we’re deeply dedicated to sustainability as an organization, as a expertise supplier, and as residents of planet Earth.

Tags: Africa knowledge lab, Carbon Name, local weather change, Local weather Innovation Fund, Cloud for Sustainability, Environmental Sustainability, web zero, Paris local weather settlement, Expertise, sustainability, water optimistic

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