According to Pike Research, "capital investment in energy-efficient network equipment will reach $122 billion by 2014, representing 46% of the total network infrastructure market...The opportunity is largest for mobile network operators, which we expect will represent almost two-thirds of the green telecom market. This focus is especially relevant as mobile operators deploy 4G networks at scale over the next few years."
Vertatique emphasises 'Green ICT' over 'Green IT' to embrace the opportunities in communications infrastructures and operations: telecommunications, broadcast media, etc. One such opportunity in occurs as the global telecommunications networks migrate from a circuit switching (TDM) to packet switching. ('Data' communication now dominates traffic as even telephony moves to packets (VoIP).) An investor makes the case that his portfolio company making energy-saving migration switches is "cleantech".
A report from the Environmental Defense Fund's Climate Corps illustrates a few basic concepts of Green ICT that can often get obscured in more sophisticated discussions.
Climate Corps fellow Jen Snook discovered an opportunity to save lighting costs in 100 million square feet at telecom company AT&T. This represents the space used for equipment, which Snook discovered was lighted 100% of the time but was typically occupied only about 10% of the time.
As we learn that most ICT impact occurs outside of the data center, understanding the the impact of "CT" becomes as important as that of "IT". GÉANT, the multi-gigabit pan-European research and education (R&E) network, has completed an GHG audit of its network backbone using the ISO 14063 standard. Its report both offers insights and raises questions.
I just received an email from the Sierra Club about a "special offer from our friends at CREDO Mobile." The email continues "Not only are they are the first mobile phone company to be certified by CarbonFund.org for offsets that cover the shipping and lifetime electricity use of their phones, but they give back to non-profit organizations like us and have worked with the Sierra Club in our efforts…" The Credo Mobile promotion in the Club email criticizes AT&T, exclusive US voice and data carrier for Apple's iPhone/iPad devices, for its contributions to anti-environmental politicians:
"The Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World is an annual project initiated by Corporate Knights, the magazine for clean capitalism…with three strategic partners to identify…the global corporations which have been most proactive in managing environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. Launched in 2005, the annual Global 100 is announced each year during the World Economic Forum in Davos." ICT companies do not populate the top of this list like they do some others.
Vertatique strives to cover the CT, as well as the IT, in Green ICT, with attention to networking, broadcast, telephony, and other communications infrastructure elements. Even before the smartphone explosion, the IEEE's GreenCom'09 conference noted: "Data rates in wired and wireless networks are driven by "Moore's Law" and are thus rising by a factor of roughly 10 every 5 years.
One of the six goals in the US National Broadband Plan (NBP) is
Goal No. 6: To ensure that America leads in the clean energy economy, every American should be able to use broadband to track and manage their real-time energy consumption.