Wireless and broadband emerge as key CO2-reducing tools

By: James Gowan
Carbon Trust and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative

According to a recent report published by Carbon Trust and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative, the ICT industry is enabling significant carbon emissions reductions. Verizon proudly sits on the board of GeSI and was able to contribute our knowledge and expertise during the development of the report.

Key findings of the report:

  • Smartphone use, smart working, and smart travel technologies are key to enabling emissions reductions.
  • The carbon reduction enabled by mobile communications technology is approximately 5 times greater than the carbon emissions from the operation of mobile networks – and this is only a fraction of what is theoretically possible.
  • 20% of current reductions come from the use of smartphones to enable behavioral changes in lifestyles and working patterns enabled by functions or apps. The greatest impact today is through connecting with family and friends using voice or video calls, replacing physical journeys.

We’re doing our part by offering customers an array of IoT services that enable travel substitutions, efficient transport, and intelligent building management to enable them to better manage their energy use.

In 2013, Verizon began its own investigation into the sustainability benefits of our technologies. A study we commissioned with Accenture helped us quantify the effectiveness of our products in reducing carbon emissions. In 2014, we enabled the saving of approximately 17 million metric tons of CO2. That’s the equivalent of .3% of annual U.S. emissions or taking 3 million cards off the road.

A prime example is our wireless telematics product Networkfleet, which gives fleet managers GPS and engine-performance information on each of their cars and trucks, helping them plan more efficient routes, improve maintenance and foresee mechanical breakdowns – saving time, mileage, and fuel.

As our customers are getting smarter about energy use, so are we and we’re making it easier for them to make an impact.

Earlier this year, Verizon pledged to partner with GeSI to help policymakers and other industry sectors better understand how ICT can help achieve carbon-reduction goals. Just recently, we also committed to the American Business Act on Climate Pledge for goals to support reducing our environmental footprint. Verizon looks forward to continuing the momentum of enabling the reduction of carbon emissions through mobile technology.