|GreenITNet Information and communication technologies (ICT) have become a driving force of economy and society sustaining growth and prosperity. On linedata processing has in the last decade developed into a truly new infrastructure. ICT is ubiquitous and will become more so in the coming years.Also ubiquitous however has become the question of the sustainability of ICT. ICT has been singled out as a fast growing consumer of energy witha sizable carbon footprint. Already ICT consumes 8% of electricity in urban areas. Energy costs have become the largest proportion of ICT costssometimes questioning the availability of the electricity needed.Since a few years the sustainability of ICT, “Green IT”, has become a major issue. Knowledge institutions, governments, and industries form the ICTsector and other sectors have turned actively to reduce the energy consumption of ICT.
As the first results of these Greening OF ICT activtiesbecome available a second essential factor becomes clearly visible. Reducing CO2 emissions and energy consumption of almost all sectors of society and the economy also depend on ICT. It has beenestimated that “smart” deployment of ICT (increasing power use) can decrease the use of electricity with a factor 5 or more.The opportunity for Greening the economy and society BY ICT turns Green IT into a truly global issue, with ramifications on all levels of economy and society, involving a myriad of stakeholders. For regional governments development of effective policies to stimulate stakeholders to implement Green IT actions have become a major new area of activity.
GreenITNet offers the opportunity to assess a wide range of actions and analysepolicies and policy instruments to explore, develop and implement Green IT. Policy development not only has to fit opportunities in sectors asdifferent as households, buildings, mobility, industrial processes, and the ICT and energy infrastructure itself, it also has to grasp many different opportunities and restraints of a technological, institutional, social and economical nature.
Throughout Europe a number of regional authorities has taken up the challenge. The vastness of the task requires strong cooperation and exchange of experience to pool resources and expertise. The main objective of GreenITNet is to support 10 partners (Riga, Manchester, Rome, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Catania, Oresund, Malta, Kranj, Czestochowa) and a large network of other cities and regions to develop a systematic Green IT policy framework and select a number of good practises and effective policies. The project organises a process of systematic exchange and assessment of Green IT policies and delivers a repository of policies.
GreenITNet makes an important start to turn policy making for energy efficient ICT and ICT as an enabler to fight climate change into mainstream regional policy involving many stakeholders, enduring well beyond the life time of the project.
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