ICT is transforming the economy across many diverse industries, from utilities to transport to healthcare and also governments. Ericsson, through its products and solutions, is helping to deliver on that potential around the world. Intelligent transport systems help make transport cleaner, safer and more seamless while smart grids and smart meters increase energy efficiency by enabling applications like home-energy management and grid automation.
The SMARTer2020 study, found a total potential reduction of global CO2e emissions across six sectors of the economy of 16.5% amounting to $1.9 trillion in gross energy and fuel savings and a reduction of 9.1 Gigatonnes carbon dioxide equivalent (Gt CO2e) of greenhouse gases.
In another study, produced by Yankee Group and GeSI members Ericsson, BT, Deutsche Telekom, and Verizon, the energy reduction impact of eight online or ICT-related activities within households was explored in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the U.K (referenced as the EU-5) and in the US. The findings showed that the greatest benefit by far could come from an increase in telecommuting. This shift could produce energy savings equivalent to 102 million barrels of oil per year in the EU-5, and 214.6 million barrels of oil in the US.
The adoption of holistic LCA methodologies as standardized by ETSI, ITU-T and ISO:
The following case studies look at a range of impacts.
Smart work: The effects of introducing smart work solutions at TeliaSonera. Smart work including teleworking to reduce annual commuting, use of video-conferencing and other ICT solutions for “smart meetings” to reduce business travel as well as flexi-office schemes that together with smart meetings can reduce the need for office space, workplace meeting space, storage space and furniture storage, and paper consumption.
Ericsson and Swedish operator TeliaSonera measured the impact of TeliaSonera’s use of ICT-based smart work solutions such as teleworking, flexi-working, virtual or telepresence conferencing and flexi-office. TeliaSonera’s goal was to reduce air business travel, car travel and need for office space. Using 2001 as a baseline year, the study found that between 2001-2007:
Collaborative work at Ericsson: New ICT tools such as Ericsson’s Business Communication Suite (BCS) developed for a collaborative working environment make it possible to share information, reducing the need for travel, paper and office space. Building on the Ericsson / TeliaSonera Smart Work case study, about 1.3 tonne of CO²e can be saved per Ericsson employee and year while the ICT (BCS) system itself only emitted 14 kg per employee and year including both additional operation and manufacturing.
Mobile Money: In rural areas in developing markets such as Kenya where this study was done, the banking infrastructure is limited. This makes it necessary to travel to the nearest town to pay for water and electricity and to refill a mobile phone prepaid account. Making a loan repayment requires a daylong expedition to the nearest bank – 12 km away – if the money sent from relatives abroad has arrived.
With the Mobile Money solution, this can be achieved without leaving home, making it unnecessary to travel. Three of the main uses are: money transfer, local payment and bank services.
Field Force Management: Location-based services is an enabler for smart logistics, bringing information on the location of a user’s mobile device to existing mobile applications. This creates personalized services designed to meet user and enterprise demand for increased safety, efficiency and convenience.
By using field force management, number of field operation service vehicles and total fuel consumption can be reduced significantly. In one case study, the emission reduction per vehicle and year was greater than 500 kg CO², while the additional operation and manufacturing of the ICT system needed for the location-based services only emitted about 5 kg CO²e per vehicle and year.
Digital delivery: In this case from Spain, advertisement products were digitalized which reduced emissions from production as well as transportation of physical media. The digital product emitted less than 1% of its physical counterpart’s CO² emissions.