ICT industry backs greenhouse gas emissions methodology at ITU event

ITU announced that the first ITU Green
Standards Week
closed with a call on international bodies, NGOs,
standards bodies, governments, regulators, industry and academia to collaborate
more closely on the application and development of information and
communication technologies (ICT) standards to help combat climate change.


Particular emphasis was placed on a globalized methodology to assess the
environmental impact of ICTs, reducing e-waste, and the use of submarine cables
for climate monitoring and disaster warning.


ITU has been working with industry and government members aiming to
achieve agreement on an internationally recognized set of methodologies to be
approved by the end of the year. Included is a methodology which ICT companies
can use to measure their own carbon footprint, as well as a way to estimate the
considerable savings in global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy that
can be achieved in other sectors through the use of ICTs.


A single global methodology will give credibility to the various claims
currently being made about the benefits of ICTs in addressing climate change
and energy issues.


By adopting globally
agreed standards – green standards – we will help to create a smarter, greener,
planet; a planet which will be full of opportunity and potential and which will
help the next generation reap tremendous rewards,” said
Hamadoun Toure, secretary
general, ITU.


The increase in e-waste generated by the expanding use of ICT, and the
decreasing life span of equipment, was highlighted by participants as an area
of great concern, as was the export of e-waste to developing countries.


Production of ICT equipment must minimize the use of toxic material,
and be designed to have a longer life span. Standardization is important in
achieving this. ITU’s universal charger is an excellent example of what can be
achieved with international cooperation. E-waste that cannot be avoided must be
recycled in an environmentally sound manner to extract valuable secondary raw
materials,” said Malcolm Johnson, director of ITU’s Telecommunication
Standardization Bureau (TSB).



ITU is working with its membership and others including United Nations
UNEP, the Basel Convention, CEDARE and StEP on this issue.


Two high-level segments gave prominent public and private sector voices
the opportunity to discuss how the ICT industry’s climate change agenda may be
promoted in the run-up to the 2011 United Nations Climate Change Conference, to
be held in Durban, South Africa, at the end of the year.


The sessions advised on how ICT may aid in the implementation of the
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Kyoto
protocol, how governments may set relevant and transparent policy objectives
regarding ICT standards and the environment, as well as how governments and the
ICT sector may effectively communicate and cooperate to achieve these goals.


Green Standards Week was supported
by Huawei, Research In Motion, Alcatel Lucent, Cisco, VRM Italy and Microsoft.
The goal was to raise awareness on the role of ICTs to promote environmental
sustainability and in particular how standards can help to achieve this.


By Telecomlead.com Team
[email protected]