At the Mobile Asia Congress, the GSMA unveiled Mobile’s Green Manifesto, developed in collaboration with The Climate Group. Rob Conway, CEO and Member of the Board, GSMA, was joined at the launch by China Mobile’s Chairman Wang Jianzhou, Kevin Tao, CEO Huawei Device, and Changhua Wu, greater China director at The Climate Group, who outlined their existing environmental undertakings and goals for the future.
The Green Manifesto sets out how the mobile industry plans to lower its greenhouse gas emissions per connection, and demonstrates the key role that mobile communications can play in lowering emissions in other sectors and industries.
It makes specific policy recommendations for governments and delegates attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen (COP15), December 7-18, to realise the full potential of the role that mobile communications can take in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions.
Through the Green Manifesto, the mobile industry outlines its goals:
To reduce its total global greenhouse gas emissions per connection (not including machine to machine SIMs) by 40% by 2020 compared to 2009. This forecast covers all emissions from energy sources under the control of the mobile operators, including energy consumption from the radio network, buildings, and energy consumption and emissions from transport.
The mobile industry is aiming for carbon neutral growth. The number of mobile connections is set to rise by 70% to eight billion by 2020 as the industry builds out a new generation of mobile broadband networks, bringing billions of people into the information economy. Despite this growth, the mobile industry forecasts that, through its activities, its total emissions will remain constant at 245 mega-tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2e) – equivalent to 0.5% of total global emissions in 2020, or the greenhouse gas emissions of the Netherlands.
To work with handset vendors to ensure that the energy consumed by a typical handset, in standby and while being used, is reduced by 40% by 2020.
To work with equipment vendors to ensure that the life cycle emissions of network equipment components are reduced by 40% by 2020.
“With the right public policies in place, the mobile industry can make a major contribution in the fight against global warming, lowering emissions in other sectors by more than 4.5 times mobile’s own footprint, which is the equivalent of taking one in every three cars off the road,” said Conway. “The mobile industry could enable greenhouse gas emission reductions of 1,150 Mt CO2e in 2020 – twice the present emissions of the United Kingdom. We will be calling upon governments at COP15 to ensure that mobile solutions are at the forefront of the global fight to prevent climate change and mitigate its consequences.”
Said Steve Howard, CEO, The Climate Group: “Wasting energy is just that – a waste. Mobile technologies are at the forefront of a new energy information revolution and have a major role to play in helping individuals and businesses cut their emissions and save money by making it easier to monitor and manage energy use. Using our phones to cut energy in our homes and offices, from electric cars and solar panels, to washing machines, fridges and TVs is not rocket science and could soon become as commonplace and simple as sending a text.”
Within the Green Manifesto, the mobile industry calls upon governments to sign a successor to the Kyoto Protocol and to establish binding global long term targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Following from a new treaty, emissions reduction policies must be implemented or continued at a country, state and/or regional level. Greenhouse gas cap and trade schemes should deliver a stable and effective long term price for carbon to stimulate innovation and the green economy.
Conway continued: “The mobile industry globally is taking great strides towards improving its own energy efficiency and enabling other industries to do the same. As the findings from our Asian Observatory research show, over the next five years an additional one billion connections are expected to be added as the Asia Pacific market is projected to exceed three billion connections in 2013. It therefore seems pertinent to launch the Green Manifesto in the Asia Pacific region, world’s largest mobile market, which has the potential to make such a huge and positive impact in terms of the green goal that we are striving to achieve.”