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 Thursday, 20 September 2012

ITU, the Ministry of Communications of Ghana, the National Communications Authority of Ghana and the Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana, in cooperation with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, have published a report Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Information & Communications Technologies (ICTs): the Case of Ghana.

The report written by Angelica Valeria Ospina (University of Manchester), Cristina Bueti (ITU), Keith Dickerson and David Faulkner (Climate Associates), focuses on exploring an increasingly important question: How can developing countries effectively integrate ICT tools within climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies?

Ghana’s experience, illustrated in the report, demonstrates that ICTs can help developing countries to unlock those opportunities, and overcome the challenges posed by climate change through e-enabled adaptation and mitigation responses.

The contribution of this report is two-fold. It presents the potential of ICTs towards adaptation and mitigation through the concrete case of Ghana, illustrating the challenges and opportunities faced by developing countries in this field. The report complements this analysis by offering concrete lessons learned and practical suggestions aimed at developing country decision makers and practitioners, thus fostering the adoption of novel, ICT-supported approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigation.

The case of Ghana represents a successful model to be replicated in other developing countries to build resilience against climate change using ICTs.

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 16:17:43 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In support of the “International Year for Sustainable Energy for All”, ITU together with the Italian Ministry of Economic Development and the University of Genoa has issued a new report, “Boosting energy efficiency through Smart Grids”. This report, which was officially launched at the second ITU Green Standards Week held in Paris, France  on 17-21 September, details how information and communication technologies (ICT) help mitigate climate change by making energy management more efficient.

ICTs represent the pillars for the development of a “smarter” electric grid, which can help meet the challenge of delivering electricity more efficiently and reliably in our societies and extending the reach of electrical services to worldwide regions that are still excluded.

“This report gives a brief understanding about the possible path toward “green” ICT, which is the implementation of power-aware and conscious devices for communication and information management”, say Franco Davoli, Matteo Repetto, University of Genoa, Italy; Carlo Tornelli, Gianluigi Proserpio, RSE, Milan, Italy and Flavio Cucchietti, Telecom Italia, authors of the report.

Smart grids also represent an opportunity for developing countries in the deployment of new electricity infrastructure by enabling more efficient operation and lower costs, allowing them to manage peak demand and to prevent electricity theft.

ITU–T Study Group 5 (Environment and climate change) is encouraged to take the lead and work in cooperation with the major standardization bodies in the ICT and electrical fields to provide standardized directives on design and power-saving requirements for next-generation ICT devices and installations.

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 16:13:36 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU together with the European Telecommunications Network Operators’ association (ETNO) has launched a new report giving Guidance on Green ICT Procurement.

The report was launched during the forum on Environmental Sustainability for the ICT Sector, which took place on 20 September 2012 in Paris (France) as part of the second ITU Green Standards Week.

This report aims at guiding ICT companies in adopting sustainable business practices.

Aimee Torres, ITU consultant, author of the report: “ICT companies have the power and legitimacy to innovate, transform and dematerialize the economy, but the increasing proliferation of information and communication technologies has raised concerns about the environmental consequences of these technologies… All kinds of business practices and procurement decisions should, and can, be made with a greener perspective.”

The report proposes a structured step-by-step procurement process, outlining green principles to be applied by the ICT industry when procuring goods, products and services, answering the questions: How to buy? What to buy? Whom to buy from?

To achieve effective procurement practices, the author reiterates the need to foster effective standardization in these processes.

A structured mapping and step-by-step application of standardized procurementprocesses analysis can enable ICT organizations to simplify their procedures, meet the goals of the organization and assess the environmental impact through the inclusion of energy, environment and carbon criteria in their purchasing activities.

This report shows ICT companies a way to incorporate green thinking considerations in every step of their procurement process.

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 16:09:35 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A Review of Mobile Handset Eco-Rating Schemes was another of a raft of reports launched at the second Green Standards Week in Paris this week. The publication outlines eco-ratings schemes developed by mobile telecommunication operators to measure the sustainability and environmental performance of their products to consumers.

Achieving environmental sustainability is one of the major challenges of our times. To support the behavioral change of consumers towards more sustainable purchasing, industries have developed schemes to provide information on a product’s relative sustainability, especially with regard to environmental aspects.

These eco-rating schemes generally cover three broad categories — the company, the supply chain and the device itself.

This report shows that there is no scheme that could be considered a perfect view of sustainability; however, each does attempt to provide a broad perspective of the sustainability impact of the manufacture, use and disposal of a mobile handset.

Based on this study, areas that eco-rating schemes should consider as best practice are identified. To drive further improvements, ITU-T Study Group 5 is encouraged to take the lead on integrating the best elements of each scheme into a single scheme to simplify the process for consumers, mobile operators and manufacturers.

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 16:05:41 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU together with the United Nations University (UNU) has launched a report containing results of a Survey on Conflict Minerals Due Diligence Initiatives.

The report Greening ICT Supply Chains – Survey on Conflict Minerals Due Diligence Initiatives was launched during the forum on Greening ICT Supply Chain, which took place on 18 September 2012 in Paris, France as part of the second ITU GreenStandards Week.
International concern has been raised about the so-called Conflict Minerals issue,referring to minerals (namely tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold) mined in conditions of armed conflict and human rights abuses.

These minerals are key inputs for products of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry. Their sourcing from the African Great Lakes Region - one of the largest sources of these minerals - is taking place in the heart of two of the most important ecosystems on the planet: the Congo Basin Ecosystem and the Albertine Rift. Unsustainable management of how minerals are accessed, extracted, processed and transported can irreversibly endanger the surrounding environment.

While the conflict and human rights aspect of ICT supply chains originating from the African Great Lakes Region garners much of the current international attention, the environmental aspect has been overlooked.

This survey details existing initiatives (national and international legislation, as well as industry-, government- and multi-stakeholder led activities) aimed at providing the ICT sector with guidance to conduct due diligence on their supply chains to ensure that their sourcing of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold does not contribute to conflict and human rights violations and does not harm the environment.

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 16:01:44 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

External power supply standards to enable truckloads of efficiency gains Geneva

18 September 2012 - A new ITU-Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) report reveals that standards for the manufacture of external power supplies (EPS) could enhance their reliability and extend their lifecycle while decreasing their average weight by up to 30 per cent. This could eliminate 300,000 tonnes of e-waste annually, the report estimates. Putting this in context, this amount of waste, equivalent to sixty per cent of current annual EPS e-waste, would form a 300km truck-jam, every year.

Full press release

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Thursday, 20 September 2012 07:47:23 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, 19 September 2012

ITU is to host a Forum on Conformance and Interoperability for the Arab and African Regions. The event will focus on the ITU Conformity and Interoperability programme, and will be held 5-7 November 2012, in Tunis.

The Forum will address the following questions: tasks, efforts and priorities to be fulfilled in the international standardization field to increase interoperability of products between various providers/manufacturers; capacity building and the creation of test centres in the Arab and African regions; accreditation; certification; mutual recognition agreements for quality certificates; testing experience for system and network solutions; services and parameters of network functionality for ensuring quality of service (QoS).

Detailed information on the event is available here

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Wednesday, 19 September 2012 07:55:20 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 18 September 2012

In order to help overcome a short-term backlog of editorial work, ITU Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB) is inviting applications to work remotely as a Technical Editing Assistant on a temporary consultancy basis.

Applicants should ideally have experience in editing ITU texts through previous involvement with ITU-T Study Groups. The work would involve editing the publications of ITU’s Standardization Sector (ITU-T) particularly ITU-T Recommendations; verifying technical consistency and validity, and taking measures to improve the quality in line with ITU-T guidelines and in consultation with relevant experts when appropriate. Remuneration is offered at 4000 CHF a month on the basis of a minimum 400 pages a month depending on the complexity of the text.
Applicants should have at least eight years of experience in technical or editorial work, including at least two years editing technical texts in English.
For more information or to apply, please contact

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Tuesday, 18 September 2012 08:11:27 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 17 September 2012

Unified action by ITU members to reduce "bill shock" for consumers

Geneva, 14 September 2012 – ITU members from the public and private sectors have agreed on measures to reduce ‘bill-shock’ whereby consumers are faced with unexpected and excessive charges for mobile roaming. They have approved a number of measures to empower consumers and encourage operators to lower tariffs. These measures (Recommendation ITU-T D.98) will represent the first truly international agreement taking steps towards lowering roaming costs.

Full press release

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Monday, 17 September 2012 08:43:48 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Briefing sessions for ITU members on proposals submitted to WCIT-12 and WTSA-12 will be held at ITU Headquarters in Geneva, on 8 and 9 October 2012. The sessions will be chaired by Mohamed Al-Ghanim, Director General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, United Arab Emirates. The WCIT-12 session will take place the full day on Tuesday 8 October and the morning of 9 October and the WTSA-12 session will follow that afternoon.

These meetings will provide participants with the opportunity to explain their proposals, exchange views and have a better understanding of each other’s proposals and positions. The Secretariat will provide two documents, one for WCIT and one for WTSA, showing the consolidated proposals submitted by 1 October 2012.

For further information please refer to Circular 1025

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Wednesday, 12 September 2012 14:07:38 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |