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 Monday, April 28, 2008

The ITU/MIC Kyoto Symposium on ICTs and Climate Change closed 16 April with agreement that the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) should play a significant role in the global efforts to combat climate change. The Symposium had six substantive sessions, including:

  • Climate change: ICTs to the rescue?
  • Corporate responsibility: Towards a climate-neutral ICT sector
  • ICTs for monitoring climate change
  • ICTs as a clean technology
  • Towards a high bandwidth, low carbon future
  • Adapting to climate change

A number of actions were recommended for ITU such as assisting countries, in particular developing ones, to raise awareness on how information and communication technologies (ICTs) can help adapting and mitigating to climate change. Specific areas mentioned are, among others, strengthening the capacity of developing countries to use ICTs for sustainable development, disaster and emergency preparedness, actions on food insecurity, use of remote sensing, assistance to rural communities and coordinated action to assist the most vulnerable countries. Experts also recognized that each country should consider promoting the use of ICT applications for government services (e-Government) from national to local levels, as well as reducing the emission of greenhouse gases through environmentally friendly use of ICTs in other sectors such as public health, education, business and employment.

More information on the Symposium is available in the chairmanís report, the meeting summary and the ITU background report. Presentations from this event can be viewed here. The chairmanís report will be forwarded to upcoming meetings of the World Economic Forum, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) ministerial meeting in the Republic of Korea, the G8 meeting in Japan and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The second ITU symposium on ICTs and climate change, will be held 17-18 June in London, hosted by BT. The London event will also be broadcast as a live Webinar. To register online at this event, see here.