Monday Jan 14, 2013

Don’t Miss the Oracle Value Chain Summit on February 4-6 in San Francisco

By Jon Chorley, Chief Sustainability Officer and Vice President of Supply Chain Management Product Strategy

Please join me at our upcoming Oracle Value Chain Summit in San Francisco on February 4-6. This summit features ~200 sessions across all of the supply chain management solution areas -- including Product Lifecycle Management, Manufacturing, Maintenance, Value Chain Planning, Value Chain Execution and Procurement. Customers, partners, and industry luminaries will discuss how to transform supply chains into value chains for a competitive edge. Hear from our exciting keynote speakers and customers who will share their experiences and discuss best practices for optimizing supply chains. Don’t miss this exceptional opportunity to gain the latest Oracle product knowledge in detailed product sessions and participate in a hands-on solutions pavilion.

Sustainability will be discussed throughout this summit. And we also have a general session, ”The Sustainable Value Chain”, that will take place on Tuesday, February 5. Several supply chain experts will join me in discussing how sustainability is a growing factor in business positioning and performance. For product companies - the design, operation and optimization of supply chains is the central component of any meaningful sustainability program. But how to balance costs with benefits? How to measure the effectiveness of any program? How to identify the best business opportunities while avoiding "greenwashing"?  We will discuss the implications of these trends and will review real-world examples of how sustainability can be embedded throughout the supply chain to reduce risks and costs while increasing revenues.

I hope you can join us at the Oracle Value Chain Summit. See the full agenda and registration information here.

Saturday Jan 05, 2013

Sustainability Reporting Doubled in 2012

According to the recent Governance & Accountability Institute’s 2012 Corporate ESG/ Sustainability/Responsibility Report, the percentage of S&P 500 companies that reported on their sustainability strategies, initiatives, programs and performance has more than doubled, growing from 19 percent in 2011 to 53 percent in 2012 (reporting among Fortune 500 companies grew from 20 percent in 2011 to 57 percent in 2012). With more than 50 percent of this important group of companies reporting, those that do not report will feel increasing pressure to do so in the future. Click here for more information.

Call for Nominations for Oracle Excellence Awards: Eco-Enterprise Innovation - Due July 15

Is your organization using an Oracle product to lower its environmental footprint while reducing costs? For example, you may use Oracle’s Agile Product Lifecycle Management to design more eco-friendly products, Oracle Transportation Management to reduce fleet emissions, Oracle Exadata Database Machine to decrease power and cooling needs while increasing database performance, Oracle Business Intelligence to measure environmental impacts, or one of many other Oracle products. Your company may be eligible for an Oracle Excellence Award:  Eco-Enterprise Innovation. Submit a nomination form located here by July 15 if your organization is using any Oracle product to take an environmental lead as well as to reduce costs and improve its business efficiencies by using green business practices. These awards will be presented during Oracle OpenWorld 2013 (September 22-September 26) in San Francisco.

Either a customer or its partner can submit the nomination form on behalf of the customer. Winners will be selected based on the extent of the environmental impact they have had as well as the business efficiencies they have achieved through their combined use of Oracle products. To be eligible for this award, your company must use at least one of Oracle’s products and the solution should be in production or in active development.

These awards will be presented to the winning customers and their partners during Oracle OpenWorld by a senior Oracle executive and will be honored in a special Oracle OpenWorld conference session. Winning customers will receive a free Oracle OpenWorld registration pass and will have the opportunity to participate in Oracle media opportunities. See last year's winners here.  

Friday Jan 04, 2013

Earth Rangers Increases Data Center Energy Efficiency by 90% Without Sacrificing Performance or Scalability by Upgrading Storage System

Earth Rangers, a recent winner of our 2012 Oracle Excellence: Eco-Enterprise Innovation Award, has been building out its Web-based tools to support online learning and education. With its Website content growing by more than 20 terabytes a year, they required a scalable, high capacity, high performance storage solution. Given their organization’s core mission, energy efficiency was also a critical factor in the selection process. Earth Rangers successfully met both goals with Oracle’s Pillar Axiom 600 storage system. It cost-effectively increased storage capacity utilization, improved its power usage effectiveness to 1.5, and increased energy efficiency in the data center by 90%, without sacrificing performance or scalability.

When initializing the organization’s data center, it had two options—standard implementation of enterprise solutions or virtualization coupled with data storage optimization and cooling load reduction. Earth Rangers chose virtualization, which is more cost effective to initiate and operate than traditional servers, and this resulted in an instant return on investment.

The installation has allowed Earth Rangers to avoid consumption of the equivalent of 100,000 kilowatt hours of energy, and 26 tons of greenhouse gas emissions. These savings contributed significantly to the 17.8% energy savings Earth Rangers realized in 2011—all while the organization was growing, both in reach and employees. See
here for more information about Earth Rangers success.

If your organization is also using Oracle products to reduce its environmental footprint while reducing costs and improving operational business efficiencies, submit a 2013 Oracle Excellence: Eco-Enterprise Innovation Award nomination here.

Friday Dec 14, 2012

Integrated Reporting Is Getting Closer

By John O’Rourke, Vice President, Product Marketing, Oracle

Oracle recently sponsored a webcast on CFO.com titled:  The CFO Playbook on Integrated Reporting: Integrating Sustainability into Financial Disclosures which focused on why top companies in the U.S. and overseas are incorporating sustainability content into their annual reports and other financial disclosures. 

The webcast speakers, James Margolis, partner with Environmental Resources Management (ERM), a global provider of environmental, health, safety, risk and sustainability consulting services (EHSS) and Mike Wallace, Director of the Global Reporting Initiative's Focal Point USA, discussed the benefits of integrating sustainability reporting with traditional financial reporting. They noted how investors, corporate directors, lenders and most recently, the Securities and Exchange Commission, use this information to better understand, benchmark and value companies. They also talked about the November 2012 release of an Integrated Reporting Framework by the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC).  Read the press release and link to the framework here. 

The shift towards integrated financial and sustainability reporting is gaining momentum with a number of global stock exchanges endorsing this approach in 2012.  Visit these links to listen to the webcast and download the slides. You can also view a demonstration of Oracle's solution for integrated financial and sustainability reporting. If you’re interested in learning more about this and Oracle’s other sustainability reporting solutions, click here.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please feel free to contact me at john.orourke@oracle.com.

Monday Dec 03, 2012

Evaluating Solutions to Manage Product Compliance? Don’t Wait Much Longer

By Kerrie Foy, Director PLM Product Marketing, Oracle

Depending on severity, product compliance issues can cause various problems from run-away budgets to business closures. But effective policies and safeguards can create a strong foundation for innovation, productivity, market penetration and competitive advantage. If you’ve been putting off a systematic approach to product compliance, it is time to reconsider that decision.

Why now?  No matter what industry, companies face a litany of worldwide and regional regulations that require proof of product compliance and environmental friendliness for market access.  For example, Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS), a regulation that restricts the use of six dangerous materials used in the manufacture of electronic and electrical equipment, was originally adopted by the European Union in 2003 for implementation in 2006 and has evolved over time through various regional versions for North America, China, Japan, Korea, Norway and Turkey. In addition, the RoHS directive allowed for material exemptions used in Medical Devices, but that exemption ends in 2014. Additional regulations worth watching are the Battery DirectiveWaste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), and Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) directives. Additional regulations are expected from organizations such as the Food and Drug Administration in the US and similar organizations elsewhere. Meeting compliance requirements and also successfully investing in eco-friendly designs can be a major challenge. It may involve transforming business models, go-to-market strategies, supply networks, quality assurance policies and compliance processes.  Without a single source of truth for product data and without proper processes in place, ensuring product compliance burgeons into a crushing task that is cost-prohibitive and overwhelming.  However, the risk to consumer goodwill and satisfaction, revenue, business continuity, and market potential is too great not to solve the compliance challenge. Companies are beginning to adapt and thrive by implementing systematic approaches to product compliance that are more than functional bandages, they are revenue-generating engines.

Consider working with Oracle to help you address your compliance needs. Many of the world’s most innovative leaders and pioneers are leveraging Oracle’s Agile Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) portfolio of enterprise applications to manage the product value chain, centralize product data, automate processes, and launch more eco-friendly products to market faster.   Particularly, the Agile Product Governance & Compliance (PG&C) solution provides out-of-the-box functionality to integrate actionable regulatory information into the enterprise product record from the ideation to the disposal/recycling phase. 

Agile PG&C is a comprehensive solution that makes product compliance per corporate initiatives and regulations more reliable and efficient. Throughout product lifecycles, use the solution to support full material disclosures, gain rapid visibility into non-compliance issues, efficiently manage declarations with your suppliers, feed compliance data into a corrective action if a product must be changed, and swiftly satisfy audits by showing all due diligence tracked in one solution.

Given the compounding regulation and consumer focus on urgent environmental issues, now is the time to act. Implementing an enterprise-wide systematic approach to product compliance is a competitive investment. From the start, Agile PG&C enables companies to confidently design for compliance and sustainability, reduce the cost of compliance, minimize the risk of business interruption, deliver responsible products, and inspire new innovation.  Don’t wait any longer!

To find out more about Agile Product Governance & Compliance download the data sheet, contact your sales representative, or call Oracle at 1-800-633-0738.

Friday Nov 30, 2012

Oracle Streamlines Tracking of Global Carbon Footprint and Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Oracle has automated its global carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions measurement using Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting. By using this solution, Oracle was able to increase organizational efficiency and reduce the need for labor intensive, manual processes in the tracking of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for both voluntary and legislated environmental reporting.

The move to Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting enables Oracle to more effectively meet both internal and governmental reporting needs, while addressing the associated economic mandates for reporting emissions and sustainability efforts. Organizations across the company can now record environmental data such as energy consumed or energy generated at facilities or locations within the enterprise, and can automatically calculate corresponding GHG emissions resulting from the use of emission sources. In addition, Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting includes data integration from multiple applications to ensure proper representation and calculation of emissions across the globe. The result is access to fast, accurate data and reporting to help the company meet its sustainability goals.

Thursday Oct 25, 2012

Will the Global Demand for Water Outstrip the Supply by 2030?

A recent study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Oracle Utilities, titled “Water for All?”,considers the preparedness of utilities to supply water to the current global population of over 7 billion people, with a further 1 billion expected by 2030. It compares strategies used by utilities in 10 major countries to address this challenge. This study’s findings show that wide-ranging water management efforts and large-scale investments must be made if utilities are to meet near-certain water stress—demand outstripping supply—by 2030. The report is based on an online survey of 244 executives of water utilities in these countries, supplemented by in-depth interviews with 20 water utility executives and independent experts. The research concludes that utilities worldwide expect to meet future demand, despite increased supply pressure on supplies, due to improvements in water productivity that the wide range of measures utilities and governments will take to ensure that water is used more efficiently. Read more about this here.

Product News: Oracle Unveils a Waste Management Solution for the Oracle E-Business Suite

Oracle recently announced a new product to help organizations reduce the cost and compliance with international hazmat (short for hazardous materials) and recycling and environmental protection laws. This new waste management solution for Oracle E-Business Suite extends the capabilities of  Oracle Depot Repair, Oracle Transportation Management and Oracle Global Trade Management. It automates and monitors waste management processes to help ensure that hazardous materials are tracked and handled in accordance with regulatory requirements. Oracle’s waste management solution for the Oracle E-Business Suite leverages Oracle Transportation Management and Oracle Global Trade Management, enabling customers to view in-transit inventory across the extended supply chain, while also providing a single repository for all legal, regulatory and compliance related information. Read here for more information.

Tuesday Oct 23, 2012

Oracle Congratulates Winners of the 2012 Oracle Excellence Award: Eco-Enterprise Innovation

Oracle recently held its fifth annual Eco-Enterprise Innovation awards ceremony during Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco. Oracle Chairman of the Board, Jeff Henley, awarded select customers for their use of Oracle products to help with their sustainability initiatives. During this session, several award recipients discussed how they embedded various sustainability strategies throughout their organizations to help reduce their costs as well as their environmental footprint. It was an interesting session based around green best business practices and how Oracle products enabled many of these customers’ sustainability efforts.

The winning customers for 2012 are: Dena Bank, Earth Rangers Centre, Grupo Pão de Açúcar, Health Authority – Abu Dhabi, Korean Air, North County Transit District, Orlando Utilities Commission, Ricoh – Europe, Schneider Electric, Severn Trent Water, and Terracap.

Several of these winning customers also selected a partner to co-accept the award with them. These winning partners played a major role in helping these customers achieve their sustainability-related efforts..

Oracle also awarded Ian Winham, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from Ricoh Europe, with Oracle's Chief Sustainability Officer of the Year award. Ricoh Europe is a multinational imaging and electronics company with a strong commitment to sustainability. Ian was honored for his leadership in reducing Ricoh's environmental impacts by leveraging Oracle's applications and underlying technology.

See here for more details.

Tuesday Sep 25, 2012

South Korea Upcoming Cap and Trade Legislation

In my previous blogs I talked about climate change legislation trends in California, Australia and the European Union. In the next series of blogs, I am going to highlight how carbon trading and sustainability reporting legislation is evolving in other Asia Pacific countries, including South Korea, China, Japan, India and Taiwan - starting with South Korea.

South Korea passed legislation to begin a national cap-and-trade program in May 2012. Korea is the 8th biggest source of GHG emissions in the world and has a national target of cutting them 30% by 2020. South Korea's program will cover about 60% of emissions and will affect big emitters across the economy, including utilities, major manufacturers and even large universities. Emissions trading is scheduled to begin in Korea in 2015, the same year as in Australia and China.

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting supports the needs of South Korea and helps ensure consistency across organizations in how data is collected, retained, controlled, consolidated and used in calculating and reporting emissions inventory. Learn more about the upcoming cap and trade legislation in South Korea and how to use Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting to meet those requirements here.

By Elena Avesani, Principal Product Strategy Manager, Oracle

Tuesday Sep 18, 2012

Sustainability Activities at Oracle OpenWorld

Close to 50,000 participants will come to San Francisco for Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne events, held September 30-October 4, 2012 at Moscone Center. Oracle is very conscious of the impact that these events have on the environment and, as part of its ongoing commitment to sustainability, has developed a sustainable event program─now in its fifth year─that aims to maximize positive benefits and minimize negative impacts in a variety of ways. Click here for more details.

At the Oracle OpenWorld conference, there will be many sessions and even a hands-on lab which discuss the sustainability solutions that Oracle provides for our customers. I wanted to highlight a few of those sessions here so if you will be at Oracle OpenWorld, you can make sure to attend them.

One of the most compelling sessions promises to be our “Eco-Enterprise Innovation Awards and the Business Case for Sustainability” session on Wednesday, October 3 from 10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. in Moscone West 3005. Oracle Chairman of the Board Jeff Henley, Chief Sustainability Officer Jon Chorley, and other Oracle executives will honor select customers with Oracle's Eco-Enterprise Innovation award. This award recognizes customers and their respective partners who rely on Oracle products to support their green business practices in order to reduce their environmental impact, while improving business efficiencies and reducing costs.

Another interesting session is the “Tracking, Reporting, and Reducing Environmental Impact with Oracle Solutions” which occurs on Monday, October 1 from 4:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. in Moscone West Room 2022. This session covers Oracle’s overall sustainability strategy as well as Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting (EA&R), which leverages Oracle ERP and BI solutions for accurate, efficient tracking of energy, emissions, and other environmental data. If you want more details, make sure to visit the hands-on lab titled “Oracle Environmental Accounting & Reporting for Integrated Sustainability Reporting”. This hour-long lab will take place on Tuesday, October 2 at 5:00 p.m. in the Marriott Marquis Hotel-Nob Hill CD. Here you can learn how to use Oracle EA&R to collect sustainability-related data in an efficient and reliable manner as part of existing business processes in Oracle E-Business Suite or JD Edwards Enterprise One. Register for this hands-on lab here.

 

Wednesday Aug 15, 2012

Customer News: Geodan Reduces Response Times by 25% and CO2 Emissions by 50%

We recently completed the nomination period for our 2012 Eco-Enterprise Innovation awards. We’ll be announcing the winners at Oracle OpenWorld on Wednesday October 3 in a special sustainability executive session. More news to come about that, but I wanted to give you an update on one of our winners from last year, Geodan. They are a leading geo-information and communications technology (ICT) consultancy firm that specializes in supplying location data via innovative technologies. Geodan developed a vehicle incident management system for the Dutch motorways that handles highway incidents and measures how fast a rescuer can arrive on site. They developed this system based on Oracle Database 11g to enable the collection, analysis, and reporting on vast quantities of real-time geodata and other data relating to traffic incidents and resolution. Geodan was able to minimize traffic delays thanks to faster incident management, minimizing durations of traffic jams and helping to reduce CO2 emissions by 50%. They received Oracle’s Eco-Enterprise Innovation Award in 2011 on the basis that the system they developed delivers a real contribution to reducing CO2 emissions resulting from traffic jams in the Netherlands. Read here for more details about Geodan’s success.

Tuesday Jul 31, 2012

Product News: Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management

Many readers have been asking about the products that Oracle provides to help customers with their sustainability initiatives. I will start writing some blogs that will discuss many of these products. For an overview of all of Oracle’s sustainability solutions, see this whitepaper and our website.

I figure that I’ll start with our newest sustainability-related product and that is one for our Utilities customers. Oracle Utilities helps utilities prepare for smart metering and smart grid initiatives that enhance efficiency and provide critical intelligence metrics that can help drive more-informed energy and water usage decisions for consumers and businesses. Oracle recently announced the availability of a new application that helps utilities manage “smart device” assets for improved operational efficiency. This new application is called Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management and it can help utilities manage the change, configuration and inventory of smart grid assets.   

This product was developed to meet the asset management needs of “smart devices” in a utility’s distribution infrastructure, the new software manages devices, such as meters, access points or communication relays and communication components attached to various devices that are too complex for traditional asset management systems. New smart-grid microprocessor-based devices must be managed closely throughout their lifecycle for configuration changes, firmware updates and security and compatibility issues.  Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management handles critical functions, such as managing and tracking updates and patches, as well as supporting governance and regulatory audits and smart grid Network Operations Center (NOC) processes. Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management is built on open standards and is therefore compatible with Oracle Utilities Meter Data Management and other third-party meter data management solutions to provide complete and reliable smart grid operations based on customer choice.

Oracle provides integrated solutions that enable utilities of all sizes and types to achieve optimal operational efficiency and outstanding customer satisfaction. Learn more about all of Oracle’s solutions for Utilities. Oracle provides integrated solutions that enable utilities of all sizes and types to achieve optimal operational efficiency and outstanding customer satisfaction.

Wednesday Jun 13, 2012

United Kingdom Climate Change Legislation

As part of our blog series on legislative trends worldwide, today I’m going to highlight the UK's leading efforts towards a low-carbon economy in the context of the European Union’s (EU’s) wider objective of transitioning to a resource efficient and climate resilient economy as well as its political commitment to reducing carbon emissions by at least 80% by 2050.  You can see more information about this here.   

Current policies have put the UK on track to cut emissions by over a third, on 1990 levels, by 2020. The Climate Change Act 2008 is the core legislative body that establishes the UK’s long-term framework to tackle climate change. The Act aims to encourage the transition to a low-carbon economy in the UK through unilateral legally binding emissions reduction targets. This means a reduction of at least 34 percent in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 and at least 80 percent by 2050. Introducing these carbon budgets will ensure meeting the targets for 2050 and beyond.  One of the initiatives established by the Climate Change Act is the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme.  This is a mandatory scheme aimed at improving energy efficiency and cutting emissions in large public and private sector organizations. These organizations are responsible for approximately 10% of the UK’s emissions.

Learn more about this and how Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting can help provide accurate and complete tracking and calculation of emissions data.

By Elena Avesani, Principal Product Strategy Manager, Oracle

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