The partner companies will work with IBM to integrate their products and services with IBM's Green Sigma offering, which applies Lean Six Sigma principles and practices to energy, water, waste and greenhouse gas emissions in all operational areas, including transportation, IT systems, manufacturing and distribution, offices, and retail spaces, IBM officials explained.
"As we all work toward creating a greener, smarter planet, it is plain that none of us can get there alone," said Rich Lechner, IBM vice president for energy and environment.
"Through public and private partnerships, and with leaders across a range of industries and technologies combining and sharing our expertise and talent, we can create the solutions the world needs to conserve resources and address climate change."
Observers welcomed the news.
Richard Sandor, chairman and founder of the Chicago Climate Exchange, said "We are encouraged that the results of these types of collaborative efforts between public utilities and industry leaders like those promoted by IBM are providing energy and water solutions that are efficient and environmentally responsible."
Please read on for further comment on the Green Sigma Coalition, and news of an energy-saving supercomputer planned for Switzerland.
Francis Murray Jr, president and CEO of the New York State Energy and Development Authority, said "We applaud IBM's approach of sharing expertise and technology through industry collaboration with IBM's Green Sigma Coalition and other public/private partnerships.
In related news, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH) and IBM have announced plans to use excess heat from a planned supercomputer to warm Institute buildings.
IBM officials said the Aquasar water-cooled supercomputer will consist of two IBM BladeCenter servers with 22 Cell blades and 6 Intel blades, delivering peak performance of about 10 Teraflops.
Waste heat from Aquasar will be used directly to heat buildings, an arrangement invented by scientists at IBM's laboratory in Zurich. The chip-level cooling system was jointly developed by ETH and IBM.
Putting waste heat to good use should reduce ETH's overall energy consumption by up to 40 percent.
The plans call for Aquasar to begin operation in 2010.