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Cisco solutions driving sustainability

We embrace our opportunity to help customers, suppliers, and partners reduce their environmental impacts. Our industry has an important role to play. Cisco’s digital technologies can be used to reduce GHG emissions, improve resource efficiency, and enable circularity in business models.

Our technology can also be used to help the world prepare for the consequences of a changing world and a changing climate—such as to monitor grid reliability, enable grid decarbonization, monitor transportation and water systems, and support the workplace of the future. For example, through WebEx by Cisco, AnyConnect VPN, and TelePresence, Cisco is providing the tools that make it possible for millions of employees to work from home daily. These technologies can also help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with commuting and other business travel. For nearly 40 years, Cisco has been helping businesses, communities, and countries transition to a digital economy. Now, we are helping them adapt to a low-carbon circular economy as well.

Cisco is empowering our sales and partner communities with training, key tools, and new resources so our extended ecosystem is ready to engage customers on their sustainability priorities. Learn about Cisco's Environmental Sustainability Specialization for partners.

Energy and GHG emissions reduction

As companies set ambitious GHG emissions reduction targets, including net-zero or other science-based targets, technology will play a role in driving emissions reduction.

Cisco’s Smart Building solutions can help our customers reduce their energy use through low-voltage power over ethernet (PoE) smart switches that provide network-based monitoring and control of temperature, lighting, air quality, and other building characteristics. Using these solutions, facilities operators can monitor systems and devices, manage energy use, track occupancy levels to protect occupants’ health and safety, and troubleshoot issues.

We also support customers’ transition to hybrid work practices and reducing emissions from air travel and commuting. Cisco’s remote collaboration technologies can also increase employee productivity, promote work-life balance, and help strengthen partnerships across diverse geographies.

Data center modernization


United States-based construction leader Interstates has modernized its data center, accelerated its IT operations, and laid the foundation for a hybrid cloud model with Cisco UCS X-Series servers and Cisco Intersight. The performance and density of Cisco UCS X-Series modular systems allowed Interstates to consolidate its server footprint across two data centers by more than 50 percent. And the modularity of the platform gives the company exceptional flexibility in addition to a lifespan that is expected to last more than a decade. By significantly reducing rack space, they are now using less power and cooling. With the company wanting to be more sustainable, Cisco UCS X-series series are helping Interstates move toward that goal.

Smart buildings

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE)

When ASHRAE, the world’s leading building standards organization, moved to a new corporate headquarters, it partnered with Cisco and NTT to retrofit a 43-year-old building into a secure and innovative workspace designed with sustainability in mind. The building’s universal PoE foundation, powered by Cisco, allows systems to be managed over the network through an integrated building management system. ASHRAE’s new building uses this technology to securely enable an intelligent reception system, a space-specific heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) optimization program based on occupancy, and an energy management system combined with an onsite solar photovoltaic (PV) system that enables the building to consume less power than it generates.

Penn 1

The global COVID-19 pandemic altered dynamics between companies, workers, and workspaces. Many organizations are trying to determine how to best use their real estate and support their employees moving forward. Cisco is demonstrating what’s possible with the newly renovated, completely reimagined Penn 1 Plaza in New York City. The building, a 42,000-square-foot Midtown Manhattan building constructed in the 1970s, now showcases innovation, flexibility, and sustainability. Penn 1 was converted to a smart building, thanks to a foundational network featuring Cisco Catalyst 9000 switches and access points, PoE technology that provides data connectivity and electrical power for the building’s subsystems, and a single interface—Cisco Spaces—for integrating and visualizing the data from those systems.

WPP, a United Kingdom-based creative agency, is reducing its office footprint by moving its global agencies and staff to campus sites in major cities. The company uses Cisco Meraki in these new buildings to understand energy usage and reduce emissions–and inspire its clients to do the same.


Cisco Meraki sensors track a range of energy and environmental data. This can help reduce usage and costs and makes for a better working environment. Cisco Meraki sensors in campus data centers enable creative agency WPP to reduce energy consumption across its heating and cooling infrastructure. WPP reports a 44 percent cut in cooling energy and a 27 percent drop in total energy consumption for its data center in Sea Containers House, London, thanks in part to closer monitoring. WPP intends to replicate this monitoring, and the associated savings, worldwide. Globally, WPP estimates that this will equate to a reduction in carbon emissions of 86 kilotons—the equivalent of planting 1.5 million trees per year.

Powering the grid


As Italy’s largest electricity provider, Enel needs to make sure that its services are always on. We’ve partnered with Enel to create a smarter, more efficient power grid. Enel is working with Cisco to introduce innovative solutions for agile grid operation, regulation, and supervision. Using Cisco technology, Enel can monitor its energy grid and preemptively address faults or failures that threaten the network. Cisco solutions help Enel connect its grid to renewable energy sources like solar and wind energy at scale, speeding the transition to a low-carbon electricity grid. Together, Cisco and Enel are supporting sustainability and more reliable, affordable energy.


The E-Flex project—a joint initiative between Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration (CDA) program, the Imperial College London, and other partners—proved the potential of vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technologies with fleets of vehicles owned by public and private-sector organizations. Twenty locations around the United Kingdom were outfitted with two-way charging stations from which data was collected. As a lead partner on the project, Cisco’s Umbrella cloud-security solution provided secure connectivity at the charging stations, and Cisco Meraki cameras added to physical security. If it proves successful at scale, V2G could become a critical part of a lower-carbon future.

Circular economy


Cosentino, based in Spain, is a global family-owned company that produces and distributes surfaces for architecture and design. The company recently became the first in the world to leverage a Cisco Green Pay agreement. Cisco Green Pay is a circular IT payment solution from Cisco Capital that shifts equipment provision from an ownership model to a circular economy model. Instead of buying the equipment outright, Cosentino signed a three-year payment agreement, at the end of which Cisco will refurbish, recycle, or reuse equipment. Cisco will then replace it with new, state-of-the-art equipment. "By cycling out our network every three years, we eliminate e-waste and ensure we always have the most reliable and secure hardware available," says Diego Zengin, Cosentino's Chief Technology Officer.


Digital technology opens up a new playing field for circular business models. Cisco partner 99Bridges is leveraging Cisco IoT and networking technology to create a reusable bag system designed to eliminate single-use plastic bags. 99Bridges created a technology platform called Mosaic that reminds and rewards customers for reusing their smart-enabled reusable bags. Mosaic also enables retailers to track and manage the end-to-end circular lifecycle and environmental impact of the reusable bags. 99Bridges is piloting the solution with major retail chains across North America, including Walmart, Target, and CVS Health.

Connected Conservation

In fiscal 2023, Cisco continued working with Dimension Data and Connected Conservation Foundation to deploy Africa's largest landscape-wide IoT Conservation Network. Spanning 3 million hectares of intact wilderness, this network is connecting 22 community-led conservancies, helping them work together in sharing knowledge, and leveraging real-time data for conservation. Cisco donated networking infrastructure, as well as ongoing technical support, to make this network possible.