Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > The real climate and transformative impact of ICT

Electronic data

  • freitag2021climate

    Accepted author manuscript, 219 KB, PDF document

    Available under license: CC BY-NC: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Links

Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

The real climate and transformative impact of ICT: A critique of estimates, trends and regulations

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Published

Standard

The real climate and transformative impact of ICT : A critique of estimates, trends and regulations. / Freitag, Charlotte; Berners-Lee, Mike; Widdicks, Kelly; Knowles, Bran; Blair, Gordon; Friday, Adrian.

In: Patterns, Vol. 2, No. 9, 100340, 10.09.2021.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Harvard

APA

Vancouver

Author

Bibtex

@article{88ff130fffe94cf3933e4ffe17347193,
title = "The real climate and transformative impact of ICT: A critique of estimates, trends and regulations",
abstract = "In this paper, we critique ICT's current and projected climate impacts. Peer-reviewed studies estimate ICT's current share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at 1.8-2.8% of global GHG emissions; adjusting for truncation of supply chain pathways, we find this share could actually be between 2.1-3.9%. For ICT's future emissions, we explore assumptions underlying analysts' projections to understand the reasons for their variability. All analysts agree that ICT emissions will not reduce without major concerted efforts involving broad political and industrial action. We provide three reasons to believe ICT emissions are going to increase barring intervention and find not all carbon pledges in the ICT sector are ambitious enough to meet climate targets. We explore the underdevelopment of policy mechanisms for enforcing sector-wide compliance, and contend that without a global carbon constraint, a new regulatory framework is required to keep the ICT sector's footprint aligned with the Paris Agreement.",
keywords = "ICT, Carbon footprint, AI, big data, data science, IoT, blockchain, policy, regulations",
author = "Charlotte Freitag and Mike Berners-Lee and Kelly Widdicks and Bran Knowles and Gordon Blair and Adrian Friday",
year = "2021",
month = sep,
day = "10",
doi = "10.1016/j.patter.2021.100340",
language = "English",
volume = "2",
journal = "Patterns",
issn = "2666-3899",
publisher = "CELL PRESS",
number = "9",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - The real climate and transformative impact of ICT

T2 - A critique of estimates, trends and regulations

AU - Freitag, Charlotte

AU - Berners-Lee, Mike

AU - Widdicks, Kelly

AU - Knowles, Bran

AU - Blair, Gordon

AU - Friday, Adrian

PY - 2021/9/10

Y1 - 2021/9/10

N2 - In this paper, we critique ICT's current and projected climate impacts. Peer-reviewed studies estimate ICT's current share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at 1.8-2.8% of global GHG emissions; adjusting for truncation of supply chain pathways, we find this share could actually be between 2.1-3.9%. For ICT's future emissions, we explore assumptions underlying analysts' projections to understand the reasons for their variability. All analysts agree that ICT emissions will not reduce without major concerted efforts involving broad political and industrial action. We provide three reasons to believe ICT emissions are going to increase barring intervention and find not all carbon pledges in the ICT sector are ambitious enough to meet climate targets. We explore the underdevelopment of policy mechanisms for enforcing sector-wide compliance, and contend that without a global carbon constraint, a new regulatory framework is required to keep the ICT sector's footprint aligned with the Paris Agreement.

AB - In this paper, we critique ICT's current and projected climate impacts. Peer-reviewed studies estimate ICT's current share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at 1.8-2.8% of global GHG emissions; adjusting for truncation of supply chain pathways, we find this share could actually be between 2.1-3.9%. For ICT's future emissions, we explore assumptions underlying analysts' projections to understand the reasons for their variability. All analysts agree that ICT emissions will not reduce without major concerted efforts involving broad political and industrial action. We provide three reasons to believe ICT emissions are going to increase barring intervention and find not all carbon pledges in the ICT sector are ambitious enough to meet climate targets. We explore the underdevelopment of policy mechanisms for enforcing sector-wide compliance, and contend that without a global carbon constraint, a new regulatory framework is required to keep the ICT sector's footprint aligned with the Paris Agreement.

KW - ICT

KW - Carbon footprint

KW - AI

KW - big data

KW - data science

KW - IoT

KW - blockchain

KW - policy

KW - regulations

U2 - 10.1016/j.patter.2021.100340

DO - 10.1016/j.patter.2021.100340

M3 - Journal article

VL - 2

JO - Patterns

JF - Patterns

SN - 2666-3899

IS - 9

M1 - 100340

ER -