Use ICT to cut CO2 emissions

KUALA LUMPUR: Fujitsu Ltd believes that the use of information and communications technology (ICT) can help cut carbon-dioxide (CO2) emissions worldwide by 15 million tons, by 2012.

That savings is equivalent to having 68.6 billion less compact-discs (CDs) on the planet, said the global provider of IT products and services.

“In 2007, total global CO2 emissions stood at 28.9 million tons. The ICT sector contributes 2% of CO2 emissions worldwide, while the rest are from manufacturing, transportation, construction, and among other industries,” said Atsuhisa Takahashi, president of Fujitsu’s corporate environmental strategy unit.

He said that getting various sectors to embrace ICT solutions can help reduce the CO2 emissions. The fishing industry in Japan, for example, has adopted a satellite prediction system to help save on fuel use.

“One of the problems faced by the fishing industry is fuel wastage as the fishermen cruise from place to place searching for fish, using by trial and error,” said Takahashi.

“This means fishermen spend 60% of their fuel and time just looking for the fish.”

The satellite prediction system solves this problem. It provides information on ocean conditions (such as surface temperature, currents, etc) and aids the fishermen to more accurately predict where the best fishing grounds are.

“So, being able to cruise directly to the fishing grounds translates to lower fuel costs and reduced CO2 emissions,” added Takahashi.

Another example is the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, which built a centralised, private “cloud” instead of having servers in each and every area of operations.

This cloud-computing initiative has helped the education institution save on electric power consumption (as much as 48%), as well as reduce its CO2 emissions by 120 tons, each year.

Businesses and other organisations can help reduce the consumption of materials by turning to electronic media, for music, videos and books for example. They can also reduce travel-related costs by installing videoconferencing systems.

“Warehouses and offices should implement distribution-management systems or electronic imaging systems to ensure smoother operations, which will further reduce their energy consumption,” Takahashi added.

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