Today at the climate negotiations in Cancun we released the fourth version of the COOL IT Leaderboard, which awards top marks to Cisco, Ericsson and Fujitsu. Cisco holds onto the highest rank for its commitment to building climate solutions, such as remote collaboration, connected workplace, connected buildings and telecommute offerings, and demonstration of sound methodology in calculating their potential to cut carbon emissions across other sectors of the economy.

The course to achieving a binding global deal between governments on climate change has been protracted, but businesses have turned out in Cancun en masse to express support for action. Cisco, Ericsson, Microsoft, Google, and other prominent IT brands are at the climate conference to demonstrate the role that IT can play in bringing about a clean energy revolution. Their message to negotiators is that an efficient, clean energy economy, enabled by IT solutions, ensures economic growth and environmental sustainability.

Political advocacy counts as one-third of the Leaderboard evaluation, so it is meaningful that IT companies are attending their second UN climate conference with a more audible message to government. However, their political activity in Cancun and beyond must be better supported by quantifiable examples of the effectiveness of IT solutions to cut emissions, as well as the articulation of what IT companies need from policy makers to ensure the widespread deployment and adoption of these carbon-cutting technologies.

Google again takes first place for Political Advocacy. The company’s work to stop Prop 23, an oil-sponsored California ballot initiative, from bulldozing the state’s landmark global warming legislation, sets the bar for advocacy in this scoring round. Across the board, companies need to step up their advocacy efforts and increase the frequency and volume of their support for policy frameworks to catalyze a clean energy transformation. Attendance in Cancun is important, but political action and leadership are needed throughout the year.

The gap between leaders and laggards has widened in this round, as many companies are still failing to incorporate the carbon-reducing potential of IT products and services into core business decisions and development, or into their lobbying efforts.  Furthermore, companies like Microsoft, Intel and IBM, and many of the Japanese brands, received a penalty for failing make a public break from the negative positions of business associations that represent them. Wipro and Oracle are two new additions to the Leaderboard.

We have announced the new Cool IT Leaderboard scores in front of the public, delegates, and journalists, who are in Cancun to witness critical decision making over the fate of the climate. Cisco and Ericsson have joined us on that stage to talk about the real business opportunities for green growth through solutions, and the specific actions they are taking to make emissions-saving IT indispensible to policy makers as they negotiate our future here in Cancun and beyond.

Download the Leaderboard and see how 17 of the biggest IT brands measure up on their efforts to fight climate change.