2014-09-28

Towards more Transparency by Sustainability Reporting - EnviroInfo 2014, Day 3



The last day of this year EnviroInfo started with a presentation of Dr. Sascha Roth from the Volkswagen Group. He showed us how Volkswagen tries to demonstrate the sustainability of the group in the sustainability report. For them the transparency is very important so that everyone can have a look onto the sustainability report on sustainabilityreport2013.volkswagenag.com.

We presented our paper in the "Cloud Computing" session - although our topic does not belong to this. In our project we develop a regional job portal - called vitaminBIR - as an example how to use ICT to support sustainable regional development.1

In conclusion of the EnviroInfo 2014, I joined the "Carbon Footprinting" session. Here, Borgerding2 presented energetic potentials of data centers by resource optimization. In order to improve the carbon footprint of the data center he pointed out the following requirements: efficient power use, flexible power consumption, respond ad hoc requests and the importance of being suitable for local data centers.
Afterwards, Lässig3 accentuated that there is still no consistent and standard method for the calculation of the carbon footprint. Indeed, there are many, many tools. He presented a web based solution for a source based accounting ("Where does the emission take place?") as well as for an activity-based approach ("What does the customer produce?"). In order to find out about the carbon footprint of e.g. cities, he breaks down the calculation to data that is available. He comes to the result that traffic and electricity are the biggest driver of CO2 emissions.
Corresponding to that, Kanitschar4 presented a case study of the public transport system of Vienna (see the image of this article). The aim of the case study, means of developing future scenarios, was to find out which one of the scenarios results in the smallest carbon footprint. Comparing the results serve to decide how to build up short-range transit in Vienna. In that way, calculating the carbon footprint influences - in the best case - the city planning.

All in all the EnviroInfo 2014 - ICT for energy efficiency - in Oldenburg showed ones again the variety of computer science in combination with environmental topics.

References

The following papers are included in the proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Environmental Informatics for Environmental Protection, ICT for Energy Efficiency, EnviroInfo 2014, Oldenburg, Germany, September 10-12, 2014.
  1. Filler, Andreas; Kern, Eva; Naumann, Stefan: Supporting Sustainable Development in Rural Areas by Encouraging Local Cooperation and Neighborhood Effects using ICT"
  2. Borgerding, Alexander; Schomaker, Gunnar: "Extending Energetic Potentials of Data Centers by Resource Optimization to Improve Carbon Footprint"
  3. Will, Markus; Lässig, Jörg; Tasche, Daniel; Heider, Jens: "Regional Carbon Footprinting for Municipalities and Cities"
  4. Kanitschar, Georg; Gassner, Andreas;  Brunner, Paul Hans: "Combining the analysis of resource demand and Ecological Footprint"