Microsoft's Strategy To Reduce Its Carbon Footprint04:05
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The Visitor's Center at Microsoft Headquarters campus is pictured July 17, 2014 in Redmond, Washington. Microsoft was one of the first companies to implement an internal carbon fee to reduce emissions. (Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)MoreCloseclosemore
The Visitor's Center at Microsoft Headquarters campus is pictured July 17, 2014 in Redmond, Washington. Microsoft was one of the first companies to implement an internal carbon fee to reduce emissions. (Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)

An increasing number of corporations are incorporating strategies to curb climate change in their business plans.

Microsoft has been a leader: it was the first company to use an internal carbon fee as a means to go carbon neutral.

There’s no reason to wait until 2049. It’s really, ‘Let’s get on that path.' And let’s drive the culture of innovation internally.

Rob Bernard

Now, two years after the carbon fee was implemented, Rob Bernard, Microsoft's chief environmental and cities strategist, tells Here & Now's Sacha Pfeiffer that companies are important players, in addition to governments, to reduce carbon emissions.

"If the world needs to get to 80 percent reduction by 2050—that’s the average—that means some people have to get to 100 percent, and to get there by 2050," Bernard said. "There’s no reason to wait until 2049. It’s really ‘Let’s get on that path.' And let’s drive the culture of innovation internally and with our partner network, because it’s just not about Microsoft.”

The fee has raised awareness for employees that anything they do has a carbon implication, which Bernard says is the main goal of the policy.

The employee's department will pay a tax for any activity that adds to the company's carbon footprint. The tax goes into a carbon fund that is then reinvested into clean power and carbon offsets in developing countries. Employees are also encouraged to apply for grants (funded by the carbon fee) to implement plans to reduce the company's carbon emissions.

Guest

  • Rob Bernard, Microsoft's chief environmental and cities strategist.

This segment aired on September 23, 2014.

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