Using ICTs and the Internet to meet environmental challenges

17 November 2009 - A Workshop on Internet Governance for Development in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt


Governments, business, civil society and international organisations have developed a broad variety of initiatives and tools aimed at making the use of ICTs and the Internet greener. This includes using ICT and Internet-based applications to improve environmental performance among others in buildings and urban systems, transport systems, electricity generation and distribution (“smart” applications and systems) and to be an element helping to change social behaviour to make societies more eco-friendly. The UN Climate Change Conference, COP15, is being held in December 2009, and many of these initiatives and tools are specifically aimed at ameliorating the impact of climate change.  

In May 2009, more than 200 experts from governments, business, NGO’s and science institutions came together at an OECD conference in Helsingør, Denmark to discuss how ICT’s can improve environmental performance and address climate change [see]. One of the key outputs of the conference was the urgent need to move from discussion to action – shifting from the “think-tank” to the “do-tank”. 

The aim of this workshop on “green ICTs and the role of the Internet” is to debate which actions to take - to discuss concrete policies and next steps for improving environmental performance, making more effective use of the Internet in meeting environmental targets, and harnessing the ICT sector’s potential for sustainable growth and employment, speeding a green recovery and underpinning green growth in a time of economic turmoil.

Speakers are as follows:

- Luis Neves, Vice President Corporate Responsibility, Deutsche Telekom, GeSI Chair

- Heather Creech, Director of Global Connectivity, IISD

- Finn Petersen, National IT- and Telecom Agency, Denmark

- Graham Vickery, Head, Information Economy Group, OECD 

- Dr Hossam Allam, Regional Programme Manager, Strategic Concerns Programme, Head, ICT4D Center for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE), 

Mr. Ahmad Abou Al Seoud, Under Secretary of State - Ministry of State for Environmental Affairs, Egypt, has been kind enough to agree to be chairman of the workshop.