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Green and Beyond
How can the corporate world help save the planet
Antonio Carlos Rix (carlosrix)     Print Article 
Published 2009-09-07 15:47 (KST)   
"In Sao Paulo, Brazil, the air is so dry that the number of people with breathing related problems has more than tripled the regular number for this time of the year..."

That was the beginning of my very first article on OhmyNews International, three years ago. From then until now, I have published many adventures and other stories. Unfortunately the weather situation has not improved. To the contrary, it has gotten even more chaotic.

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The calendar says it is winter in the south part of Brazil, but the Sun does not agree with calendar at all. This winter has been almost as hot as summers, and sometimes hotter. I have left my fan on for the last four nights, and wake up for sips of water.

Hotter-than-normal winters are happening across the world. How can we stop it?

During the annual IBM forum in Sao Paulo last week, the topic permeated the agenda. And the question went on to the corporate world: how can we stop all this? How can the corporate world help?

In a meeting with Mr. Nicholas M. Donofrio -- IBM Fellow, Emeritus -- I asked those questions. He was the keynote speaker on the first day and commented on the vision of IBM as a corporation to face the problem. According to IBM's vision, we have to be smarter.

The forum, hosted at the Sao Paulo IBM Innovation Center, came at a time when venture capital and technology investments in Brazil are on the rise. According to the Brazilian Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (ABVCAP), investors committed $28 billion in venture and private equity capital to Brazil at the end of 2008, up from $6 billion in 2004.

In Mr. Donofrio's view, the time has long passed for action. In the video bellow he explains that smarter companies, smarter people, smarter solutions for our cities' problems is the way the corporate world can help address this issue.

All partners and guests present at the event were challenged to be providers of smarter solutions so that IT can play a role in the fight against global warming. Below, Mr. Steve Sandler, of Wyse Technology, explains how his company aims to profit by helping other organizations "go green."

Ms. Sandra Miranda Nascimento, executive director of ST3 Tailor, put a practical idea into practice during the event. Fourm attendees received pins, like the ones below, in exchange for a personal card. For each pin/card exchange, a tree was planted.

People at the forum exchanged personal cards for trees
©2009 Antonio Carlos Rix

Get a pin and a tree at the same time - smarter marketing

Because sustainable growth is so important, IBM wants to get smarter outside their organization as well. To that end, they have started a promotional contest to encourage autonomous developers, academics and business software developers to create innovative solutions using IBM technology within the "Smarter Planet" concept. Students and professionals all over Brazil have been invited to take part in the contest for smart IT solutions new projects. Richard Mansano explains below:

It is clear that if we are to see better times -- ecologically speaking -- we must get smarter. The call is to us all.

I don't know who originated it, but following statement is a place to start:
"Everybody 'thinks' to leave a better planet for our children ... When will we 'think' to leave better children for our planet?"

Visit the IBM Web sites related to the Forum:

The call for smarter solutions and commitment was clear almost 2000 participants at the forum responded positively.
©2009 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Antonio Carlos Rix

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