Silicon Valley getting greener with Hara

Bella Center in Copenhagen, the venue of upcoming COP15 Climate Summit
Bella Center will host the upcoming COP15 Climate Summit in Copehagen from December 7 to 18, 2009. Fresh from signing on to help green Silicon Valley, startup Hara will be at climate talks in Copenhagen to urge that corporations not wait for regulations to fight global warming.

Fresh from signing on to help green Silicon Valley, startup Hara will be at climate talks in Copenhagen this week to urge that corporations not wait for regulations to fight global warming.

Hara co-founder and chief executive Amit Chatterjee told AFP that his mission in Denmark is to outline a "post-carbon economy" and "articulate the view from " regarding businesses curbing greenhouse gases.

Chatterjee, who co-authored the book "The Post-Carbon Economy," is part of a California delegation attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference starting Monday.

"It's an opportunity to hold court and try to articulate the view from Silicon Valley," Chatterjee said.

"We think it is important for the global market to think about greenhouse gas and the economy, and not wait for a government coalition."

Hara launched in June, offering Environmental and Energy Management software online as a for-fee service that identifies how efficient and green operations are being with their energy, water, and waste.

Since then, a slew of new businesses have signed on with Hara and venture capitalists have pumped an additional 14 million dollars (US) into the startup, raising the amount invested in the firm to 20 million dollars.

News Corporation last month enlisted Hara to help reduce and carbon emissions across the media goliath's global operations.

Hara software is being used by as part of an effort to become carbon neutral.

"We truly believe that what you can measure, you can manage," News Corp manager of Energy Initiatives Vijay Sudan said in a release.

He added that News Corp expects Hara "will take us far beyond carbon accounting and help us plan and implement energy reduction strategies while reducing carbon emissions."

Hara on Monday announced it has partnered with Sustainable Silicon Valley (SSV), an environment-oriented alliance with more than 100 members including technolgy titans Hewlett-Packard, Intel, AMD, eBay, Electronic Arts, and Yahoo!

SSV businesses, governments and non-governmental organizations will use Hara to measure carbon and water footprints; increase conservation efforts, and report on progress of sustainability efforts.

"We believe that the Silicon Valley region - a leader in technology innovation - can also be a leader in combating climate change, and we see Hara as a close ally in that process," said SSV executive director Marianna Grossman.

SSV and Hara leaders will be at the conference this week to discuss "best practices and latest technologies" for environmentally-minded organizations.

Economic, energy, climate, and commodity crises have driven companies to rethink the ways in which they do business, according to Chatterjee.

Companies that go green can save money by reducing energy and other costs while also benefitting nature.

Such forward-thinking firms could also be steps ahead of rivals when energy or natural resource prices rise or regulations to restrict greenhouse gases are enacted.

"The businesses and governments that are the most effective at and environmental management will have the greatest competitive advantage," Chatterjee said.

"We look forward to taking this conversation forward in Copenhagen."

(c) 2009 AFP

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