Built-in ICT resilience needed to face climate change —ITU
6 May 2014
Source: Nigerian Tribune, By Bode Adewumi
Adaptive practices for the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector will become part of the ‘new normal’ as climate change impacts increase. This was a key conclusion of a new report produced by International Telecommunications Union (ITU) along with United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) with support from Deutsche Telekom.
The report entitled: “Resilient Pathways: The adaptation of the ICT sector to climate change” recommends that positioning climate change in the sector’s agenda requires the active engagement of stakeholders at all levels, fostering the adoption of innovative measures to better cope with, respond and adjust to change. The reports launch follows the addition of a new ICT Solutions pillar in the UNFCCC’s Momentum for Change initiative, which ITU welcomes as a very positive step towards strengthening the transformational potential of ICTs as part of climate change responses.
The “resilient pathways” highlighted in this report constitute desirable routes of action amidst an increasingly interdependent and changing international environment. These pathways can allow the ICT sector to go beyond short-term reactive measures, in order to improve its overall adaptability to future unforeseen effects, while approaching adaptation from a collaborative, multi-level perspective.
Said ITU Secretary-General, Hamadoun I. Touré: “Mainstreaming climate-resilient innovation in research and development needs to become a priority. We need to foster a new, more flexible mindset and new learning processes to take into account robustness in the face of climate change impact when designing these fundamental technologies. ITU, together with key partners like UNESCO, UNFCCC and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI), stand ready to support the international community in this endeavour.”
Said Mr Luis Neves, Group Sustainability and Climate Change Officer, Deutsche Telekom: “It’s clear that the ICT industry is a powerful force in terms of adapting to climate change. For precisely that reason, it’s equally clear that we must generate new solutions with resilience in mind. This report provides some concrete guidelines for industry on how to incorporate some of those principles into the development of new technology.”