Climate action is a business imperative

Climate change is an existential threat that must be addressed now. It’s placing extreme stress on a wide range of species and habitats – and the economic impact is also mounting. In the US alone, the 20 biggest weather and climate disasters of 2021 collectively caused USD 145 billion in damage.¹

Fortunately, the world is coming to realize that it’s time to do something because the risk of doing nothing is too high. Respondents to the World Economic Forum’s 2022 Global Risks Report ranked “climate action failure” as one of the most severe risk we face over the next decade.³ And businesses have gotten the memo. They know they have to address the risks that climate change poses to their operations—and they have to reduce their own environmental impact.

But what are the next steps? How do you actually prepare for the impact of climate change? Let’s look at how you can better understand the risks you face and what actions you can take to mitigate those risks–for your business and for the planet.

20 billion-dollar weather and climate disasters occurred in 2021 in the US alone.²

The challenge of understanding climate risk

Climate change and severe weather events are taking a growing toll on business operations. Everything is at risk - from buildings and assets to supply chains, infrastructure and employees. Understanding the scale and nature of the risk is critical. To achieve this goal, businesses must be able to:

  • Model and predict the potential impacts of climate change and weather events across the organization.
  • Locate, predict, prepare for and monitor the impact of extreme conditions such as storms, wildfires, flooding, and air pollution
  • Make the right decisions at the right times to protect the organization and its stakeholders from the impacts of climate change and severe weather
  • Understand the organization’s own contribution to climate change and take effective steps to minimize or even reverse it

These points are easy to list, but hard to act on. Why? Because truly understanding your climate risk means collecting and analyzing some of the largest datasets imaginable.

Think of all of the geospatial data that comes from satellite monitoring of the Earth. Add in global weather forecast data. Then consider all of the data your organization generates about your assets, facilities and infrastructure. Now add carbon emissions data from across your organization and supply chain. The result? Enormous, continually updated datasets that are too big to move.

Luckily, most organizations aren’t starting this journey. In 2019, 96% of executives we surveyed told us they already incorporate weather data into their operational planning. But using that data to model, predict, and act on climate risk requires new tools, technologies, and expertise.⁴

Understand and address climate risk with IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite

At IBM we’ve developed IBM® Environmental Intelligence Suite, a powerful, comprehensive solution to help organizations understand and mitigate climate-related business risks including extreme weather, climate action failure and human-led environmental damage. IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite is cloud-based, AI-powered software that bridges the gap between climate science and business operations. It combines a powerful geospatial analytics engine with a climate and environmental impact modeling framework so you can:

  • Predict the risk of climate change and upcoming weather events to your business operations. In retail, for example, that could mean using future flood risk predictions to inform store location planning.
  • Understand the overall impact of weather and climate change on the business. For an electrical utility, knowing the rates at which vegetation is likely to grow along the grid network can help with vegetation management planning.
  • Protect your assets and ensure business continuity before, during and after a severe weather event. For instance,proactively identifying and prioritizing the right actions to take in the event of severe weather disruptions to give you time to organize alternative logistics routes.
  • Mitigate risks by taking the right actions at the right time to minimize economic and environmental damage from severe weather events. An insurer, for example,could send an SMS alert advising policyholders to move their vehicle ahead of a predicted hailstorm.
  • Manage your carbon footprint by understanding your organization’s Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 carbon emissions. By doing so, you can model your energy supply to help navigate and accelerate you transition to renewable energy.
  • Improve real-time decision making to reduce costs, improve efficiency and contribute to sustainability goals.

Can data save the 

Watch Dr. Hendrik Hamann, Distinguished Research Staff Member, Chief Scientist for Future of Climate at IBM, explain how companies can use intelligence to prepare for climate change.

Understanding Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

IBM Envizi supports GHG calculations for scopes 1, 2 and 3, and flexible reporting tools to meet internal and external ESG and sustainability reporting requirements.

A global leader

IBM Envizi recognized as a global leader in enterprise carbon management software, scoring highest for carbon management capabilities and market momentum in the Verdantix Green Quadrant for Carbon Management Software 2022.

Scope 1

“Direct” emissions such as those generated by company vehicles, manufacturing processes, and onsite fuel combustion.


Scope 2

“Indirect” emissions from the consumption of purchased electricity, heat or steam that you purchase from other entities.

Scope 3

Emissions that are generated by organizations and activities in the supply chain that are outside of your organization’s direct control.

Weather data APIs

EIS: Weather Data APIs

EIS: Weather Data APIs (00:18)

Go granular with weather forecasting

Enhance your existing analytical models and uncover new, more accurate weather forecasts insights. EIS gives you access to hyperlocal, current and forecasted conditions, seasonal and sub-seasonal forecasts, lifestyle indices, and severe weather and historical data APIs.

Geospatial analytics

EIS: Geospatial Analytics

EIS: Geospatial Analytics (00:25)

Get alerts for specific locations

Access real-time dashboards for monitored locations that you can access via desktop or mobile. Scalable alerting lets you combine data science, geolocation and analytics to deliver timely, automated and customized messages to relevant stakeholders.

Dashboard and alerting

EIS: Dashboards and Alerting

EIS: Dashboards and Alerting (00:24)

Identify climate-based trends

Scale your geospatial data and analytics. Achieve rapid time to value by running complex queries, machine learning-based analytics and AI workloads that allow data scientists to quickly uncover patterns, trends, correlations, and relationships between complex datasets.

Climate risk management

EIS: Climate Risk

EIS: Climate Risk (00:24)

Understand climate risk

As severe weather and climate change escalate, climate risk analytics allow you to model and monitor the risk and impact of events on key assets, infrastructure, supply chains and employees.

Carbon performance

Carbon Performance Engine Demo Video

Carbon Performance Engine Demo Video (00:29)

Carbon performance

Operationalize carbon accounting while reducing the reporting burden on procurement and operations teams. Carbon accounting APIs let you measure and report on stationary, fugitive and mobile emissions, location-based, and market-based emissions, and transport and distribution emissions. You can also identify key areas to target for carbon reduction initiatives.

Powerful capabilities for energy and utilities

Energy and utilities companies are among the most exposed to climate risk—and they play a key role in the transition to renewable energy. IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite includes optional add-ons for these critical sectors, allowing you to:

Vegetation management

EIS: Vegetation Management

EIS: Vegetation Management (00:35)

Optimize vegetation management

Unlock the hidden potential in weather and vegetation insights. Visualize your vegetation data on an interactive map and filter through territories of interest to identify circuits or corridors that are most at risk. Use scores and KPIs to help prioritize projects and drive decision-making that are most at risk. Use scores and KPIs to help prioritize projects and drive decision-making.

Outage prediction

EIS: Outage Prediction

EIS: Outage Prediction (00:38)

Outage prediction

View and understand expected weather-related outages within a defined service territory. Outage predictions can help you assess the impact of weather and climate change on a utility system, and determine the appropriate level of response required to mitigate the impact.

Renewables forecasting

IBM Renewables Forecasting Platform Demo

IBM Renewables Forecasting Platform Demo (05:58)

Renewables forecasting

Climate change and rapidly growing capacity have made forecasting for renewable generation challenging in many places across the globe. IBM’s renewables forecasting platform provides accurate power forecasts for utility-scale wind and solar farms. See how it works

Case studies

Farming in an unpredictable world

Climate change makes weather harder to predict. See how Yara has built a predictive data platform for farmers around the world, helping them to plan, sow, manage and harvest for optimum yields.

Trimming vegetation, trimming costs

A predictive approach to vegetation management can shave significant amounts off a USD 10 million annual budget. Find out how Pedernales Electric Cooperative, Inc. is improving efficiency, reliability and safety with IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite.

Designing a renewable future

See how Energinet, an independent public enterprise owned by the Danish Ministry of Climate and Energy, is harnessing the predictive capabilities of IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite to help achieve their goal of 100% renewable energy generation by 2030.

Next steps