Nortel CEO: Green Tech Good For Shareholders
Nortel Networks President and CEO Mike Zafirovski (Adrian Wyld, AP)
Adrian Wyld

Mike Zafirovski, chief executive of Nortel Networks, says his firm is playing a key role in the search for cost-effective corporate environmentalism.

As Fortune is hosting its first-ever Brainstorm: Green conference in Pasadena, Calif., Zafirovski told CNBC how Nortel is helping corporate customers save energy -- and increasing value for Nortel's own shareholders.

"Computing power as well as cooling systems require an enormous amount of energy," said Zafirovski. "But the data products we provide for data centers" are being engineered specifically for lower power requirements.

"Nortel can reduce the IT [energy] costs for corporations large and small."

And according to the CEO, Nortel's client base is showing great interest in its green strategy. One example: "Our customer, China Mobile, has very ambitious plans for energy cost reduction -- as much as 50 percent over the next five years."

  • Learn more: Watch the entire CEO interview (3 mins, 31 secs)

By some analyses, Nortel's results have looked worse than those of rivals Cisco Systems and Lucent. But Zafirovski says his green initiative will help close the gap.

"We are very proud that we have a data infrastructure that's 40 percent to 60 percent lower [in energy use] than most of our competition."