Methodologies to assess the environmental impacts of ict
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Joint ITU-GISFI Workshop on “ Bridging the Standardization Gap: Workshop on Sustainable Rural Communications ” (Bangalore, India, 17-18 December 2012). METHODOLOGIES TO ASSESS THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF ICT. KEVIN J HOUSTON, CEO CARBON MASTERS

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Methodologies to assess the environmental impacts of ict

Joint ITU-GISFI Workshop on

“Bridging the Standardization Gap: Workshop on Sustainable Rural Communications”(Bangalore, India, 17-18 December 2012)

METHODOLOGIES TO ASSESS THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF ICT

KEVIN J HOUSTON,

CEO CARBON MASTERS

Member of Independent Expert Panel advising the EU on ICT standardisation efforts

[email protected]


Agenda

Agenda

3 Recommendations published :

L.1400 Overview and general principles, available

http://www.itu.int/rec/T-REC-L.1400

L.1410 Environmental impact of ICT goods, networks and services, available

http://www.itu.int/rec/T-REC-L.1410

L.1420 Environmental impact of ICT in organisations, available

http://www.itu.int/rec/T-REC-L.1420

3 Recommendations under preparation :

L.1430 Environmental impact of ICT projects (consent expected in 2012-2013)

L.1440 Environmental impact of ICT in cities (consent expected in 2013)

L.1450 Environmental impact of ICT in countries (consent expected in 2013)


Questions on methodologies

Questions on methodologies

ITU, the UN agency responsible for ICT

193 Member States, more than 700 Sector Members and over 40 Academia Members

Co-operations on methodologies with :


Recommendation l 1400

Recommendation L.1400

General principles :

  • Assessment of environmental impacts should be performed on a full life-cycle perspective for goods, networks and services

  • Boundaries should be selected, quoted, documented and made available for verification

  • Quantification methodologies should be selected, quoted, documented and made available for verification

  • Reliable data should be researched. Used data should be quoted, documented and made available for verification

  • Bias and uncertainties should be documented and reduced as far as it is practicable

  • It should be noted that results of assessments may vary significantly depending upon the selection of boundaries, the quantification methodologies selected and data used


L 1410 what is it

L.1410 : What is it ?

  • It is a Recommendation that complements ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 and provides guidance on how to assess environmental impacts of ICT Goods, Networks and Services

    • built with a large number of representatives from the ICT sector and governments.

    • built to be consistent with EC/JRC, ETSI, IEC and GHG Protocol ICT supplement initiatives

    • It focuses on energy consumption and GHG emissions

    • More than 100 contributions and inputs were received and taken into account.


Methodologies to assess the environmental impacts of ict

L.1410 : What is it ?

  • There are 2 Parts in the Recommendation:

    • Part I : ICT Lifecycle assessment: framework and guidance

    • Part II : Comparative analysis between ICT and baseline scenario : framework and guidance

L.1410 : What is it for ?

  • identify what the major activities and life cycle stages impacting the environment, design and prepare action plans, prioritize actions

  • with the rising costs of energy and introduction of

  • carbon taxes, L.1410 aims to help :

    • save costs

    • retain customers in the future

    • develop new opportunities


  • Benefits of an lca approach

    Benefits of an LCA approach

    To provide an assessment of the environmental impact of a product system as a basis for improving it

    To understand the relative importance of different life cycle stages /activities - where to put best efforts for improvement

    To monitor performance improvements over time


    Ict lca challenges

    ICT LCA Challenges

    Data availability and data quality

    • Complexity

    • Hardware, software, networks and services

    • Rapidly changing product specifications, and service offerings

    • Multitude of components and subcomponents

    • Long, complex and dynamically changing supply chains that span the globe

    • Multitude of suppliers

    • Second-order and third-order effects


    L 1410 what are the steps to follow

    L.1410 : What are the steps to follow ?

    N.b. For Part II which is a comparative analysis between an ICT system and a reference product system the above steps need to be carried out on BOTH the ICT system and the reference product system using the SAME functional unit

    • General requirements

    • Goal and scope definition

    • Functional unit definition

    • System boundaries definition

    • Cut-off rules

    • Data quality requirements

    • Life Cycle Inventory

    • Life Cycle impact assessment

    • Life cycle interpretation

    • Reporting


    L 1410 part i reporting example

    L.1410 Part I Reporting : example


    L 1410 part ii example of reporting

    L. 1410 Part II, example of reporting

    Example of comparative evaluation between ICT and reference product system with categories of life cycle stages.


    Methodologies to assess the environmental impacts of ict

    Introduction : Questions on methodologies

    Recommendation L.1400 : General principles

    Recommendation L.1410 : ICT Goods, Networks and Services

    Recommendation L.1420 ICT in organisations

    Future Recommendations L. ICT in cities, ICT Projects

    Conclusions

    Agenda


    What is l 1420 what is it for

    What is L.1420 ? What is it for?

    Provides guidance on how to assess environmental impacts of ICT in organizations.

    Built with a large number of representatives from the ICT sector and governments. It deals with energy consumption and GHG emissions.

    It builds upon and complements ISO 14064-1 and the GHG Protocol.


    Methodologies to assess the environmental impacts of ict

    What is L.1420 ? What is it for?

    • This Recommendation covers:

      • The assessment of the life cycle environmental impact of ICT Goods, Networks and Services used by an organization (“Non-ICT organizations”)

      • The assessment of the environmental impact of an ICT organization (“ICT organizations”)

      • The reporting of these impacts to ensure fair and transparent communications


    L 1420 for ict what are the steps to follow

    Setting the Organizational boundary

    Setting the Operational boundary

    Selection of quantification methodology

    Annual assessment/Establishment of a base year

    Recalculation of energy and GHG inventory (restatements)

    Uncertainties

    Reporting

    L-1420 for ICT – What are the steps to follow


    Emission sources

    Emission sources

    Assessment and reporting for scope 1 and scope 2 emissions are mandatory.

    Assessment and reporting for scope 3 emissions are optional


    Selection of quantification methodology

    Selection or development of GHG emission factors

    Calculation of GHG emissions as under

    Selection of quantification methodology

    GWP factors for GHG taken from IPCC Time frame of 100 years

    The results are expressed in Tons of CO2e


    Annual assessment base year

    Assessments shall be carried out on an annual basis with the date of publication of L.1420 as a reference.

    However, a different base year could be chosen when:

    The organization estimates that the quantity and/or quality of available verifiable data for this particular year would guarantee a more accurate evaluation of its GHG emissions and energy consumption.

    The organization has already put in place an assessment and reporting process based on a different base year, compliant with this Recommendation.

    The activities carried out by the organization generate unusual fluctuations of GHG emissions and/or energy consumption in such a way that the base year might not be significant.

    Any choice of a different base year shall be documented

    Annual assessment / Base year


    Recalculation of energy and ghg inventory

    Applies under 2 circumstances:

    Structural changes which include mergers, acquisitions and divestments and/or outsourcing or in-sourcing of GHG emitting activities.

    Discovery of significant errors contained within the base year emission calculations which can necessitate a change in the emissions inventory.

    L.1420 makes no recommendations as to what constitutes a “significant” change and thus the need to adjust base year emissions

    Recalculation of energy and GHG inventory


    L ict projects to become l 1430 under preparation

    L.ICT projects (to become L.1430), under preparation

    • This Recommendation will specify principles, requirements and methods in order to quantify, monitor and report GHG emission reductions, energy consumption savings, energy efficiency improvements resulting from ICT projects, in complement to ISO 14064-2 and GHG Protocol.

      • It is built with a large number of representatives from the ICT sector and governments and in relationship with the UNFCCC.

    • It is expected that L.1430 will provide requirements and guidance for :

      • planning an ICT project and its baseline scenario;

      • identifying and selecting GHG sources, sinks and storages relevant to the ICT project and baseline scenario;

      • identifying and selecting energy consumption sources, generators and storages relevant to the ICT project and baseline scenario;

      • managing data quality;

      • monitoring, quantifying, documenting and reporting ICT project performance; and

      • validating and/or verifying the ICT project plan or report.


    L ict in cities to become l 1440 under preparation

    L.ICT in cities (to become L.1440), under preparation

    • This Recommendation will present general principles on how to evaluate the environmental impact of Information communication technologies (ICT) in cities, or other urban areas with a focus on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

      • It is built with a large number of representatives from the ICT sector and governments and in relationship with UNEP and UN-HABITAT.

    • It is expected that L.1440 will cover the following :

      • aggregation of impacts at cities level of ICT organizations

      • Impacts of ICT projects in cities, for instance in the construction sector, the energy sector, the transport sector

    • It is expected that L.1440 will in particular cover how to assess the impacts of the use of ICT in cities to reduce the GHG emissions of other sectors


    Conclusions

    Conclusions

    • ITU-T Recommendation L.1400 provides general principles

    • ITU-T Recommendation L.1410 complements ISO 14040 and 14044 for Life Cycle Assessment of ICT Goods, Networks and Services.

    • ITU-T Recommendation L.1420 complements ISO 14064 part 1 and GHGP

      • !410 covers both ICT Lifecycle assessment and Comparative analysis between ICT and a baseline scenario.1420 covers environmental impact of ICT in organisations

      • They are currently being used by several organisations in particular in the frame of European Commission pilots

      • It is expected that L.1410/20 will be revised taking into account the results of the European pilots and other inputs

      • Further suggestions for improvements are welcome

    • ITU-T Recommendations L.ICT projects and ICT in cities are under development

      • Suggestions and contributions are welcome. Next meeting to discuss contributions will take place in Geneva on January 29 to February 7th, 2013


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