Tool - Evaluating the carbon-reducing impacts of ICT

In connection with the Evaluating the carbon-reducing impacts methodology,GeSI has produced a powerful tool for its members

Aware of the need to move from discussion to action, GeSI continues to develop and implement solutions that will drive the world toward a low-carbon society—something that is essential if we are to make the world more environmentally sustainable. With the launch of this report— Evaluating the carbon-reducing impacts of ICT: An assessment methodology—GeSI has produced a powerful tool to mitigate the risks that lie ahead. In addition to the direct carbon emissions associated with the development and use of ICT solutions, this methodology assesses what are known as the “enabling effects” of ICT—the extent to which ICT technologies and systems can reduce or avoid the carbon emissions associated with traditional manual, mechanical, or physical activities.

GeSI has sought to develop an approach that:

  • Is able to capture all significant effects of ICT implementation, both positive and negative
  • Minimizes the time and resources needed for assessment by facilitating exclusion of negligible components of net effect (through impact estimates of life cycle processes in the screening assessment of relevant effects)
  • Supports clear, transparent communication of methodological approach and findings to a broad stakeholder audience, including consumers, ICT and non-ICT industry sectors and policy makers
  • Is widely applicable across ICT products, services and category levels
  • Is effective when applied in both the developed and the developing world
  • Is general and flexible enough for large-scale adoption and will meet current and future stakeholder assessment needs as sector innovation occurs
  • Can adapt as more detailed guidance, industry-wide standards and software assessment tools are developed GeSI’s proposed enablement methodology serves as an immediate guide for assessing ICT enabling effects and paves the way for the systemic evaluation of ICT solutions.

Development of additional guidelines will enhance and may further simplify application of the methodological framework described in this report. However, the development of such standards will require time and effort beyond the publication of this report, and thus comparison between different studies cannot occur immediately. The ITU, ETSI or other entities may propose potential add-ons or enhancements to the methodology, including:

  • Guidance on functional units appropriate for use in evaluating each category of ICT
  • Identification of likely effects that should be addressed in evaluations of specific types of ICT solutions
  • Quantitative values with which to determine whether or not identified effects should be included in more rigorous assessments

GeSI believes integration of these critical inputs into its proposed methodology will establish a more consistent, effective approach to assessment. Further consideration of these and other potential next steps will be discussed later in the report

Watch how to use the methodology-training tutorial:

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