CEO Interview: Innovating to Meet Green Goals

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In this exclusive video interview, Gary Dickerson, CEO of Applied Materials, talks about the need to revolutionize how we innovate to deliver energy efficient computing, and meet broader sustainability goals and green agendas.

Dickerson delves into one of the big challenges the semiconductor industry faces: as the new AI and internet of things (IoT) computing era is expected to double semiconductor revenue by around 2030, carbon emissions are forecast to quadruple. Hence, a big issue in the industry centers around sustainability, especially as high-performance computing (HPC) and AI/ML proliferate.

In July, at SEMICON West in San Francisco, he delivered a keynote that discussed the importance of addressing sustainability through collaboration. In his talk, “A Collaborative Pathway to Net Zero,” he proposed a call to action for the entire semiconductor industry to get serious about collaborating to execute real, achievable plans to reach net zero in carbon emissions. He highlighted Applied’s playbook for net zero—a framework that looks beyond its own Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions, which relate to both the emissions from running the company as well as from the energy it purchases.

He delved into how Scope 3 emissions, the upstream emissions from its supply chain, and the downstream emissions from the use of its products by customers can be addressed—especially since these aren’t in Applied’s direct control.

“We need to innovate how we work, where we work and who does the work,” Dickerson said.

Developing talent and innovation in processes are also necessary as the semiconductor industry charts its path to a trillion-dollar market. Dickerson talks about the various initiatives Applied has around the world, including its collaboration with Arizona State University where it has set up a shared research, development, and prototyping facility; the establishment of a collaborative engineering center in Bangalore, India; and its’ EPIC (equipment and process innovation and commercialization) center in Silicon Valley, California, focused on materials and process innovation.

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