Shell has appointed AT&T and Cisco to carry out a global energy-efficiency project focused on improving its IT infrastructure and aiding virtualisation.

The project will involve calculating the CO2 footprint of Shell's IT operations as well as mapping Shell's energy-usage patterns, with the goal of ensuring a more energy-efficient IT network.

"This analysis of the IT infrastructure power consumption represents a further step forward in an ongoing effort to improve energy efficiency in all aspects of Shell's operations," said Alan Matula, chief information officer at Shell. "It forms an integral part of our drive to improve performance, cut costs, and reduce CO2 emissions."

The project aims to enable the optimisation of underused systems, the elimination of redundant equipment, and a reduction of building space requirements.

In the long term, energy-efficient IT services will be embedded into Shell's global IT network, ensuring the consolidation and virtualisation of servers and storage, data centres and branch offices, said Shell.

AT&T was selected to manage a significant part of Shell's IT infrastructure and telecoms services as part of a wider series of outsourcing agreements. Cisco's Internet Business Solutions Group was selected to conduct the IT infrastructure energy consumption audit and make recommendations.

AT&T Telepresence Solutions, based on Cisco TelePresence suites, are being deployed, with the goal of lowering company-wide greenhouse gas emissions by reducing business-related travel.

Earlier this year, Shell, Intel, BMW, Deutsche Bank and other leading companies joined forces to plan efficient cloud computing deployments.

The move was part of Intel's Cloud 2015 vision, aimed at making cloud-based computing more interoperable, secure and simplified, through alliances with big-spending organisations and software and hardware vendors.