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Informasjonssamfunnet og IKT

En vei mot en bærekraftig utvikling?

Use of ICT is seen as a means of increasing efficiency and quality. Can it also be seen as a means for increasing eco-efficiency?

Eco-indicators should monitor changes and development of both:

  • the technical efficiency - how efficient do we conduct our actions?
  • the functional efficiency - do we employ the correct actions?

On this basis, some of the issues to be explored are:
Does ICT contribute to a more eco-efficient development today?
What is the driving forces for eco-efficient production and use of ICT?

ICT has not yet given any significant contribution to the improvement of eco-efficiency in Norway. Ecoindicators show a slight decrease in the technical efficiency, but an increase in the total consumption (functional efficiency).

Environmental data related to the total life cycle of technology are seldom publicly open. No environmental impact assessments for the development of infrastructure of communication systems are available. There are sufficient results indicating important potentials for improvement of the eco-efficiency by the use of ICT in companies and business sectors. This conclusion is based on the condition that technology is applied correctly, in the right context, and that its effects and potentials are recognised in the organisation.

We can assume that the ICT sector will develop “greener” products, driven by international treaties and directives. The ability to decrease the total environmental impacts from ICT will rely on political and economic means in order to prevent the rebound-effect.

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