Sustainable IT Khuloud Odeh


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Sustainable IT: Leveraging IT for Sustainability

April 21st 2009
SIM Capital Area Chapter, Evening Session
Bethesda, MD

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Sustainable IT Khuloud Odeh

  1. 1. Sustainable IT: Leveraging IT for Sustainability Khuloud Odeh, CIO CHF International April 21st 2009 SIM Capital Area Chapter, Evening Session Bethesda, MD
  2. 2. Sustainable Development • quot;Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (World Commission on Environment and Development 1987, 43, Brundtland)”.
  3. 3. Sustainability Challenges Funnel Metaphor by Dr Karl-Henrik Robèrt The natural Step International 4 System conditions violations: The Natural Step International
  4. 4. Green IT: Environmentally Sustainable IT Gartner 2008, hype cycle for Emerging technologies
  5. 5. Sustainability • Climate Change • Sustainable Development • Going Green • Pollution • CSR • Resources depletion • Triple Bottom Line • Species extinction • Ecological • Poverty and increased gap • Environmental Stewardship between the haves and have • Sustainability not's • …and the list goes on Sustainability / Green: Values/ Culture Sustainable Development: Process
  6. 6. Sustainable ICT Sustainable ICT “ the study and practice of designing, manufacturing, using, and disposing of computers, servers, and associated subsystems efficiently and effectively with minimal or no impact on the environment, and achieving economic viability and improved system performance and use, while abiding by our social and ethical responsibilities” (Murugesan, S., Harnessing Green IT: Principles and Practices article, IEEE, IT professional, February 2008)
  7. 7. Challenges = Opportunities • To be innovative • To rethink the status quo • To strategize – interlink , inter-operate , inter-connect, inter-relate, and take a whole-systems approach instead of partial – Keep the future in mind while living and acting in today (backcast) – Prioritize what to do in the short-, mid- and long- term
  8. 8. Sustainable ICT • ICT sector contribution to GHGs is 2% - close to the aviation industry (Gartner) • Beyond the 2% – Direct (making IT) – Indirect (using IT) – Systemic (applying IT) • Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) language. • Forum for the Future - Digital Futures, Digital Europe, Connected report (ICT and sustainable Development) • WWF and European Telecommunications Network Operators’ Association (ETNO) initiative • Saving The Climate @ The Speed Of Light campaign
  9. 9. Direct Impact – making IT • 1.83 tons of raw materials • 3Rs, or maybe • 240 kilos of fossil fuels, 22 kilos of chemicals and 1,500 4, or 5: kilos of water • 220 pounds of mine waste Reduce, to source the gold in a single circuit board around Reuse, • The average computer chip requires 45.46 liters of Recycle, and water, used primarily for washing Rethink and • Hazardous material Regulate Sources( UN University study 2004; Earthworks 2006; Fuchs,C.)
  10. 10. Indirect Impact – using IT Source: Atlantic Consulting and IPU. LCA Study ) • Smart networks, power saving features and designs, standby • data center power and cooling, virtualization • Use of renewable electricity • Adopting universal standards
  11. 11. Systemic Impact – applying IT • The biggest win is in applying IT in other sectors( like Buildings, energy, and transport). • Applying ICT affects the way we live, work, travel, shop, meet and influence policies. • Leveraging IT for sustainability
  12. 12. Systemic Impact – applying IT • Improve environmental efficiency: reduce reliance on goods and products, Heat management systems, smart grid, smart buildings and transport ( • Web 2.0 and social networking empowering communities around the world • Pervasive computing and the power of connectivity: RFID, real-time information and integrated solutions • Work: job creation and economic growth, new business models (low carbon economy is a service-base economy), telework • Transport and Travel: reduce need to travel (tele- presence), traffic monitoring (GPS), efficient freight and smarter more attractive public transportation options
  13. 13. Gartner 2008, Going Green: The CIO’s role in enterprise wide environmental sustainability
  14. 14. The Impact of Recession on Green IT: Survey Results Source: Gartner 2009, Impact on priority given to green IT
  15. 15. Source: Gartner 2009 Impact on expenditure allocated to green IT projects
  16. 16. Gartner 2009, likelihood of starting green IT initiatives
  17. 17. The ‘Ecological Crisis of Reason’ • Much of what we thought before about how to get along in our human societies (study of economy, political , society) is obsolete today. • For thousands of years the principal purpose of science was to master Nature, now we are not masters of nature but partners with nature in a mutual survival project. Source: Val Plumwood, Australian Philosopher