Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Australian Government ICT Sustainability Plan

The Australian Government ICT Sustainability Plan 2010 - 2015 has been released by the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Agencies will be required to report ICT energy and carbon emissions annually, apply mandatory environmental standards in ICT procurements, including: EPEAT Silver, ENERGY STAR, use recycled paper and recycling schemes for equipment.

The plan is eight months late (it was due out in December 2009) but appears to set reasonable goals. It also largely follows the standards and measurement methodologies I have been teaching to Australian Government staff and others in the course Green Technology Strategies.

Australian Government ICT Sustainability Plan 2010 - 2015

Summary of measures

Outcomes

  1. Improved energy efficiency
  2. Reduced carbon emissions
  3. Reduced waste
  4. Improved overall environmental performance

Strategies and Actions

Improve sustainable ICT procurement processes [Section 2]

Key outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Agencies will apply mandatory environmental standards in ICT procurements, including:

  • compliance with ISO 14024 or ISO 14021 at the level of EPEAT Silver or equivalent as a minimum standard for relevant ICT equipment.
  • ENERGY STAR as the minimum energy standard for relevant ICT equipment.
  • general use office copy paper to have a minimum post-consumer recycled content of 50 per cent by July 2011, with progression to 100 per cent post-consumer recycled content by July 2015.
  • end-of-use product take-back and appropriate resource recovery or reuse for mobile devices; toner cartridges; and ICT equipment covered by the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme under the National Waste Policy (NWP).
  • participation by ICT suppliers in the National Packaging Covenant (NPC) by July 2011 or compliance with the National Environment Protection (Used Packaging Material) Measure (UPM NEPM).
  • ICT suppliers to have an environmental management system aligned to the ISO 14001 standard.

Agencies will apply the provisions of the Green ICT Procurement Kit.

Agencies will apply sustainability principles and practices and implement strategies to effectively manage ICT resource consumption, resource demand and waste.

Agencies will include an appropriate measure or weighting for environmental criteria within ICT procurement evaluations.

Improve ICT energy and carbon management Section 3]

Key outcomes: 1, 2

An Australian Government ICT energy consumption target will be set.

Agencies will implement Green ICT Quick Wins initiatives and improvements listed in the Data Centre Strategy 2010-2025.

Large agencies will implement an ICT energy management plan (EMP), which can be part of a wider agency EMP that includes implementation of improvements from Green ICT Quick Wins initiatives, Data Centre Strategy 2010-2025, internal energy intensity measures and targets, and periodic independent ICT energy assessments for data centres and server rooms.

Agencies will report ICT energy and carbon emissions through the online system for comprehensive activity report (OSCAR) and in Annual Reports.

The OSCAR database will be modified to allow ICT reporting.

Using ICT to improve sustainability Section 4]

Key outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Agencies will actively pursue the use of ICT to improve environmental performance within government operations and in the delivery of government programs and services to achieve more sustainable economic, social and environmental outcomes.

Online information and better practice case studies will be developed and issued indicating where ICT can be used as an enabler of sustainability in government operations.

Strengthen agency management systems [Section 5]

Key outcome: 4

Agencies will conduct an environmental risk assessment and integrate significant ICT aspects into their EMS.

Agencies will review their internal governance arrangements and integrate ICT sustainability into internal documentation.

Agencies will implement strategies to raise awareness, provide training programs, and monitors and reports performance through a GreenICT Scorecard.

Leadership, governance and management [Section 6]

Key outcome: 4

A nominated agency will provide central coordination, guidance and support for agencies when implementing the plan.

Table of contents


Adapted from: Australian Government ICT Sustainability Plan 2010 - 2015, Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, August 2010.

1 comment:

Dave said...

Thanks Tom. Very handy to know. It's good to see the government taking this seriously.