IDC Sizes the Potential Reduction in Greenhouse Gases from Focused Use of Information and Communication Technologies; Results to be Announced Prior to the United Nations’ COP15 Climate Change Conference

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., LONDON, MILAN, SINGAPORE, – December 1, 2009 – IDC today announced that it has quantified the reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that result from using key information and communication technologies (ICT) to their full potential. The complete results of IDC's study, including an ICT Sustainability Index that ranks the ability of the G20 nations to use ICT to reduce their CO2 emissions, will be released at a press conference in Copenhagen on December 10th.

According to IDC's calculations, 5.8 billion tons (GT) of CO2 emissions could be eliminated by 2020 through the focused use of seventeen core technologies in four major economic sectors: energy generation & distribution, transport, buildings, and industry. The estimate represents the potential reduction in greenhouse gases for just the G20 nations. Further reductions in global CO2 emissions could be realized if more countries used ICT-based solutions to their full potential.

"ICT will be an important source of practical solutions for reducing CO2 emissions in the G20 and many other countries," said Roberta Bigliani, research director at IDC Energy Insights. "Any goals to reduce energy consumption, for example, will be accelerated by using network-based solutions as a foundation. Similarly, ICT can enable more effective monitoring and management of energy use in many key sectors of a nation's economy. Although ICT is not a pancea, its full potential has not yet been put to use."

In developing the CO2 reduction model, IDC's criterion for selecting ICT solutions were simple and clear "The core technologies had to pass three tests: they had to be mature enough to provide real benefits within three years, support significant processing on a network, and be discrete independent technologies," said Philip Carter, associate research director for Green IT & Sustainability Research.

The study also acknowledges that core ICT – the datacenter and communications infrastructure that underpins the emissions-reducing technologies – needs to scale in order to achieve the energy savings and associated emissions reductions. Chris Ingle, associate vice president of Consulting at IDC, said, "As technologies have become more powerful and more widely used to support carbon emissions reduction, the emissions from powering those technologies, and the cost of powering them, have grown. Any plan for reducing carbon emissions should include an evaluation of the emissions from core ICT infrastructure. At the same time, ICT itself needs to optimize at all levels. In addition to the rack and datacenter, planners need to consider the use of energy efficient technologies in their infrastructure as a whole, including client and print."

The results of IDC's CO2-reduction research, including the national scores from the ICT Sustainability IndexTM and policy recommendations on how ICT investments can contribute to achieving climate change goals, will be released at an international press conference to be held Thursday, 10 December 2009 (13:30 – 17:00 CET) at the Skuespilhuset (The Playhouse) in Copenhagen, Denmark. An event summary, agenda, and press registration can be found online at:[].

"We now have the ability to share with the G20 a clear road map to improve energy management through the focused use of ICT," added Vernon Turner, senior vice president of IDC's Enterprise Infrastructure, Consumer and Telecom Research. "Our expectation is that the ICT Sustainability Index will draw attention to how this can be achieved on a national level."

The ICT Sustainability Index is part of IDC's holistic Green initiative, designed to help decision makers understand the role of technology in addressing the challenges and opportunities amidst today's energy, environment, and sustainability requirements. Since being launched in 2008, the initiative has produced important research on data center power management and automation, the promotion of green procurement in Asia/Pacific, and document management policies in the enterprise. IDC's Industry Insights companies have also done ground-breaking research on how vertical industries from manufacturing and healthcare to retail and government can use the latest IT tools and services to support a company's overall green initiative. Finally, IDC's Green Recycling and Asset Disposal for the Enterprise (G.R.A.D.E.) certification process assesses the functions and tasks IT Asset Disposal (ITAD) vendors to ensure that they meet the strictest regulatory, security, and environmental standards.

For more information about IDC's ICT Sustainability Index or IDC's Green initiative, please contact Patrick Gorman at

About IDC

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. For more than 45 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company.



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