Sharpening its focus on the carbon trading markets, IBM announced today that it has partnered with two green energy specialists to develop a greenhouse gas meter called GreenCert. The software tool, which runs on IBM's WebSphere portal, is designed to standardize the process of measuring carbon emission reductions and converting that data into credits that can be traded for cash.
IBM says GreenCert will make it easier for companies in a wide range of industries to take advantage of the growing market in the trading of carbon credits. If GreenCert catches on, it would also position WebSphere to benefit from the growing focus on energy efficiency in the enterprise.
IBM (NYSE: IBM) has teamed with Enterprise Information Management, Inc. (EIM) and Evergreen Energy on the GreenCert project. Evergreen's C-Lock Technology subsidiary designed the engine to process greenhouse gas emission data from a variety of sensors and tools. GreenCert takes a snapshot of a company's carbon footprint, records it, and then takes another measurement after carbon emission reductions have been made. With the proof of carbon reduction, companies can get credits that they can then trade on the carbon market.
The overall value of the global carbon market was $10 billion in 2005, the last full year for which data is available. The World Bank has estimated that the carbon credit market may grow to $30 billion. IBM and its partners say the
"The combination of the C-Lock engine with IBM Software will radically change the way greenhouse gas emission reductions are quantified and certified," said Ted Venners, chairman of C-Lock. "Every market participant concerned with greenhouse gas emissions will benefit from the dramatic improvement of transparency and certainty of analysis this solution offers. Only by working with IBM and its Business Partner EIM were we able to accomplish this vision."
IBM said that GreenCert offers a standard, repeatable methodology for collecting large volumes of information and documenting emissions reductions, a process which has often relied on customized approaches.
Energy use (as measured by kilowatt-hours or kWh) is a critical piece of data for the calculation of emissions. Converting emission reduction to Certified Carbon Emission Reduction Credits (CCERC) opens a previously untapped revenue source. CCERC's are valued between $3 and $8 per metric ton.
The GreenCert infrastructure was designed and built by EIM and is based on a Services Oriented Architecture (SOA) that uses IBM technologies including Websphere Portal, Lotus Forms, DB2 Universal Database, DB2 Content Manager, DB2 Records Manager, WebSphere Process Server and WebSphere Business Process Management software.
"Countries with growing greenhouse emission rates such as India and China need to manage greenhouse gas risks and liabilities," said Bruce Lyman of EIM. "Thanks to IBM, we're able to be a part of the global solution by helping to pave the path towards a cleaner environment."
GreenCert will be available from C-Lock in the first half of 2008. Pricing will be made public at availability. The GreenCert application is available now as a trial beta .