Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Smart 2020: Pathways to scale

You may recall that the oft-quoted Smart 2020 report from The Climate Group identified a number of areas where ICT could help reduce emissions.  The report concluded that through its contribution to dematerialisation, smart buildings, smart power, smart industry and smart transport, ICT could facilitate emissions reductions of five times the ICT sector's own emissions, or 15% of total BAU (business as usual) emissions by 2020.  We reported on the findings here.

Well The Climate Group has followed up, in a programme called Pathways to Scale, in an effort to help achieve these targets.  The organisation is tracking the actions being implemented, in the form of case studies, in the areas of energy and carbon efficiency in buildings and offices, transport and logistics, and in the electricity network.  You can browse the database of case studies (and add your own example) here.

The Climate Group is also analysing the actions as the programme progresses.  For example, in terms of challenges to the development and implementation phase for a smart 2020 project, lack of awareness of the technology was often cited.  The biggest response was that there were no challenges, but the expectation is that problems are likely to be encountered when the initial implementation is scaled up.

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Another interesting example of the analysis was the issue as to whether the projects relied on behaviour change.  It concluded that there is still a large untapped opportunity in enabling behaviour change, in terms of optimisation and automation (although there must also be a significant aspect of non-ICT related education in there).

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