Information Systems for Environmental Sustainability

IT, Resource Productivity, Environmental Preservation, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution

IDC Report “Reducing Greenhouse Gases Through Intense Use of Information and Communication Technology: Part 1”

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An IDC report estimates the sustainability potential of ICT by country and economic sector.

ICT Potential to Reduce Carbon Emissions 

Our assessment of the technologies selected in this research shows that intensive use of technology can reduce emissions by over 25% annually by 2020.

Each of the four areas we considered — energy generation and distribution, buildings, transport, and industry — offer opportunities for carbon emission reduction. 

Using ICT in energy generation and distribution has the greatest possibility of carbon saving, particularly through a more effective integration of renewable and distributed energy sources into the distribution network (smart grids).  

Buildings and transport offer equally large possibilities of savings, the former with ICT-enabled smart building systems and the latter by using ICT to optimize.

While industry offers the smallest savings through ICT, these are still significant, particularly ICT-enabled variable speed motor controls.


Author: nigelpm

Associate Professor of Information Systems, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan - Helping organizations to navigate digital transformation.

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