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The project main objective is to promote the adoption of carbon footprint calculation methodologies in the ICT sector. ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will help ICT sector by calculating its carbon footprint in an easy way, in order to decrease environmental impact and at the same time improve competitiveness. ICTFOOTPRINT.eu also plays a key role in raising awareness on energy efficiency issues through outreach and events.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will help ICT players by offering high-standard solutions and methodologies which will help reduce their carbon environmental footprint, such as carbon or energy footprint:
1. A self-assessment tool to guide end-users in measuring their ICT carbon and energy footprint. The tool will allow the user to perform a simplified evaluation of the carbon and energy footprint at product level or at organization level. The carbon and energy footprint’s calculation rules which will be implemented in the tool will be based on the best methodological standards for the ICT sector.
2. A helpdesk with fast response time providing assistance to organisations interested in using the methodologies and the self-assessment tool;
3. An online marketplace for sustainable solutions: bringing together the demand-side (e.g. SMEs willing to adopt low-carbon and energy footprint solutions) and the supply-side (e.g. low-carbon and energy footprint solution providers), and establishing a level playing field which effectively contributes to speeding up the uptake of carbon and energy efficient ICT solutions.
4. Webinars & communication materials for continuous training and education on best practice ICT sustainable solutions;
5. Best practices and success stories from several ICT players in adopting ICT footprint methodologies in Europe.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu is relevant to those who want to learn more about energy efficiency and carbon footprint methodologies for the ICT sector. ICTFOOTFOOTPRINT.eu will provide tools, knowledge and support to all those who want to address high levels of energy efficiency and decrease their carbon footprint.
Europe is the primary audience of ICTFOOTPRINT.eu. However, our services are relevant to anyone around the world and we welcome all users to our platform and services.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu runs from February 2016 to January 2019. After that visitors will be able to continue to use the self-assessment tool, the online marketplace and will be able to access methodologies to facilitate the uptake on energy efficiency measures.
The main benefit of joining ICTFOOTPRINT.eu is to get help on how your business can become more carbon and energy efficient and how to calculate your ICT environmental footprint in an easy way, so that you can decrease your impact on the environment and make your business more competitive.
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By subscribing to the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu newsletter you will receive up-to-date information about methodologies and metrics which improve energy efficiency in ICT sector. The newsletter is also the best way to find out about new ICTFOOTPRINT.eu services which can help you gain the competitive edge by reducing your carbon footprint.
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ICTFOOTPRINT.eu does not plan to compile or process any personal data under any circumstances in relation to any activities, with the sole exception of data collected as part of the community development.
No personal sensitive data will be collected for this database, since it will be built with information that is publicly available. Should data of high relevance to ICTFOOTPRINT.eu not be publicly available, ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will request relevant authorisation and will use such data only upon written consent.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will comply with EU legislation with regard to data collection, storage protection, retention, destruction and confirmation, which will be used solely for the purpose of community building.
The concept of “footprint” is relatively recent and due to differing opinions on what this term refers to, things may get confusing for a non-expert audience. Terms like “carbon footprint”, “energy footprint” or “environmental footprint” are often used without a clear understanding of their respective meaning.
“Footprints” methodologies belong to the family of the environmental assessment methods based on Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) i.e. an approach that takes into consideration the spectrum of resource flows and environmental interventions associated with a product, service, or organization from a supply chain perspective, including all phases from raw material acquisition through processing, distribution, use, and end-of-life processes. Hence footprints methodologies are all LCA-based (Life Cycle Assessment) approaches.
An environmental footprint, unlike a carbon or energy footprint, is a multi-indicator measure of products/services/organisations impacts (see the definitions provided in the following sections).
Environmental/carbon/energy footprints can be applied to:
- - Products and services (Product Environmental Footprint – PEF, Product Carbon Footprint - PCF),
- - Organizations (Organization Environmental Footprint – OEF)
- - Even regions or countries.
A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is an environmental evaluation approach that considers the entire life cycle of a product or service, from raw material acquisition through processing, distribution, use, and end-of-life processes. LCA is a multi-criteria approach i.e. it takes into account several environmental issues. Through such a perspective, environmental burden shifting between life cycle stages or individual processes can be identified and avoided. A similar approach is undertaken for LCA of organisations or projects.
The ISO 14044:2006 standard specifies requirements and provides guidelines for life cycle assessment (LCA).
An environmental footprint is the assessment of the potential environmental impacts of a defined product/service, organization or territory, within a specific spatial and temporal boundary. Environmental footprints are Life Cycle Assessment approaches which means that they take into consideration the whole life cycle of the studied system, i.e. all the steps from the raw material extraction through processing, distribution, use and end-of-life.
Environmental footprints are multi-criteria methodologies i.e. not only focusing on one environmental issue such as climate change or energy consumption, but covering several environmental impacts such as:
- - Mineral/fossil resources depletion,
- - Water consumption,
- - Ozone depletion,
- - Eutrophication
- - Acidification
- - Etc.
A carbon footprint is a type of environmental footprint focusing on a single environmental issue: climate change.
In certain cases, it can be relevant to focus on a specific environmental impact category instead of looking at various impact categories (even if it is still recommended to consider several environmental impacts to avoid burden shifting): relevant impact categories are different for different sectors or product categories. For example, climate change (GHG emissions) is very important for energy-intensive sectors, whilst they are not as important for example for cosmetics– where it would be more the water use and toxicity aspects that define environmental performance.
A carbon footprint is a measure of the total amount of potential greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions to the atmosphere of a defined product/service, organization or territory considering all relevant sources within a specific spatial and temporal boundary. This is calculated in most methodologies as carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e).
Just as carbon footprint, energy footprints are environmental footprints focusing on a single environmental issue, the energy consumption. Hence an energy footprint is the assessment of the energy consumption related to a defined product, organization or territory, within a specific spatial and temporal boundary. This is calculated in most methodologies from a life cycle perspective.
Usually, several types of energy sources can be distinguished according the nature of the energy source and its renewability e.g. non-renewable energy sources (fossil, nuclear), renewable energy sources (solar, wind, geothermal, water). There are several indicator definitions used to quantify energy footprint. Some of them consider all types of energy
Solar radiation is re-emitted by the Earth’s surface in the form of infrared radiation, which is itself partially absorbed by various chemical species in the atmosphere: this is called the "greenhouse effect." The radiation balance determines the average temperature of the planet and the presence of greenhouse substances allows the temperature to be compatible with life on Earth (without this, the temperature would be about -15 ° C).
However, human activities generate long life greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions such as carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and halocarbons (a group of gases which includes fluorine, chlorine or bromine), resulting in an increased radiative forcing that causes an enhancement of the greenhouse effect.
In conjunction with natural forces, it contributes to global climate changes: rising temperatures on the surface of the Earth and oceans, changes in precipitation, rising sea levels ... The influence of greenhouse gases on the changes of the Earth’s climate system varies according to the radiative properties of these gases and their lifetime in the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gases (GHGs) are gaseous substances able to trap heat in the atmosphere. The “enhanced” greenhouse effect, which is responsible for climate change, is caused by human activities emitting GHGs in the atmosphere such as: carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulphur hexafluoride (SF6). Please note that water vapour, although the largest contributor to the natural greenhouse effect, is not directly affected by human activity and is not included. (source: based on Kyoto Protocol website)
A methodology offers the theoretical support for understanding which method or "best practices" can be applied to a specific need, and guidance on how to implement the method in order to evaluate the environmental footprint (such as carbon or energy footprint) related to a specific product or organisation.
Methodologies may be used for monitoring, assessing, and analysing many possible aspects of a business, in order to help organisations and public entities to become more carbon or energy efficient and, therefore, reduce costs and ultimately their environmental impact. Within the ICT sector, there are several methodologies which aim to assessing the carbon footprint and energy efficiency of ICT goods, services, and organisations.
Methodologies are generally described in general and/or technical guidelines which can be subject to a specific standard developed either by an official Standards Development Organization (SDO) or through voluntary initiatives by a consortium of various private/public stakeholders.
Go to the Methodologies page to learn more about them.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu provides information on methodologies specific to the ICT sector and related with environmental footprint implementation, with a particular focus on carbon footprint and energy footprint.
Additional methodologies may be applied to calculate performance indicators, for instance in terms of energy consumption.
Go to the Methodologies page to learn more about them.
With a wise energy and environmental efficiency strategy, global emissions can be reduced by up to 15% by 2020. By moving into the sustainable economy, you can improve your business’ energy efficiency which in turn can lead to cost savings and give you an advantage over competitors. Moreover, the improvement of the brand image is one of the main benefits of an environmental efficiency strategy such as ecodesign (in 2014, 81% of the companies surveyed in the EU identified “image improvement” as the top benefit, followed by an “increased motivation of the employees” and a “higher ability to develop new designs”. Source: IDP and Pôle éco-conception (2014) La profitabilité de l’écoconception – une analyse économique).
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will guide ICT small businesses on how to implement actions towards lower environmental footprint and greater and deal with related complex legal and administrative procedures. ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will provide ICT organisations with:
- Guidance and tools to calculate energy and carbon footprint of ICT using standards and methodologies.
- Information on certifications, best practice reports and how to customise to core business.
- Support through a Frequently Asked Questions page and helpdesk.
- Access to the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace where users can access a database of sustainable ICT service offers.
- Opportunities to showcase relevant best-practices.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will provide support on products, services and companies which aim to improve energy efficiency and decrease carbon footprint levels in the ICT sector.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will help public administrations to play an active role in defining, implementing and assessing public policy within sustainable developments in order to reduce the direct footprint of the ICT sector in their communities. With ICTFOOTPRINT.eu, Public Administration can:
- - Showcase green procurement procedures and policies.
- - Find out about Success Stories of cities which are improving energy efficiency in ICT
- - Contribute to the Policy Action Plan Strategy Report, which will shape future policies.
- - Provide feedback on the implementation of the ICT methodologies framework.
- - Access information on the competitive advantages to local businesses and industry, by placing incentives for green aware initiatives, and using the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu platform for procurement procedures.
- - Provide tax reductions to ICTFOOTPRINT.eu certified end users as an indication of measurement of their carbon footprint with the ICT methodological framework.
- - Avoid proliferation of multiple environmental labels, reporting schemes, certification schemes.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu engages with SDOs involved in the development of ICT-specific energy and/or carbon footprint methodologies (including Life Cycle Assessment). ICTFOOTPRINT.eu will help SDOs by providing opportunities to:
- Showcase methodologies on the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu web platform and monitor development.
- Contribute to ICTFOOTPRINT.eu Policy Action Plan Strategy Report.
- Receive practical feedback on the workability of different standards and metrics.
- Align between the different methodologies, and simplification of the framework.
- Have access to a comprehensive action plan with recommendations from real experience.
The ICTFOOTPRINT.eu self-assessment tool will be available soon. Be the first to find out about its launch by registering for our newsletter. Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
There will be several “self-assessment” services. To a “basic assessment” of your carbon footprint through the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu self-assessment tool, you should provide with an organisation profile. This includes information on activities, procedures and equipment/services acquired. For a more detailed and complete self-assessment, a mapping of your organisation’s digital processes is required.
The ICTFOOTPRINT.eu self-assessment tool will calculate your carbon footprint based on the information you have provided us and the footprint model parameters from selected methodologies and metrics.
The ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace is an online meeting point which will bring together the demand-side (SMEs willing to adopt low-carbon footprint solutions) and the supply-side (low-carbon footprint solution Providers). The marketplace will establish a level playing field for both and contribute to speeding up the uptake of energy efficient ICT solutions.
If you are a buyer, interested in low carbon footprint solutions, go to the marketplace and click on “REGISTER AS A BUYER”. Then complete the requested information and click “Submit”. You will then receive a confirmation email. To join ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace as a seller, meaning you will provide low carbon footprint product and services, click on “REGISTER AS A SELLER” at the marketplace page, fill the form available and click “Submit”. You will get a confirmation email in your mailbox.
The marketplace offers information on products and services to improve your energy efficiency from various providers. These are 6 categories: Hardware, Software, Connectivity, Data management, Advisory/Consultancy, Certifications & Other Services.
To find out more about Solution Providers in the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace, simply click on the Solution Provider name found on the product/service page or on product/service listing pages (search results) when browsing.
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace has 6 types of green solutions: Hardware, Software, Connectivity, Data management, Advisory/Consultancy, Certifications & Other Services. All provide products and services which will help you to improve your energy efficiency and reduce your carbon footprint.
You can promote your products and services on the ICTFOOTPRINT.eu marketplace. To do this you should register as a seller on the marketplace and select which of our 6 categories your product or service best matches. The categories are as follows: Hardware, Software, Connectivity, Data management, Advisory/Consultancy, Certifications & Other Services
ICTFOOTPRINT.eu helpdesk will be dedicated to support SMEs interested in adopting LCE methodologies and that lack experience in this field. End-users can receive dedicated support on the adoption of best practices regarding energy efficiency in ICT and assistance on using ICTFOOTPRINT.eu services, such as the self-assessment tool (available soon) and the online marketplace.
The ICTFOOTPRINT.eu helpdesk will provide support in 5 languages: English, French, Italian, German and Spanish, allowing barrier reduction to almost 60% of European ICT SMEs.
To select one of the 5 languages available on ICTFOOTPRINT.eu helpdesk, select the “flag” of the country/language.