When we think about climate change, the main sources of carbon emissions that come to mind for most of us are industries like petroleum, mining and transport.
But according to Lotfi Belkhir, Associate Professor of Eco-Entrepreneurship at McMaster University in Canada, the mobile phone in your pocket is increasingly responsible for the emission of hundreds of tonnes of C02.
Having conducted a meticulous and fairly exhaustive inventory of the contribution of ICT —including devices like PCs, laptops, monitors, smartphones and tablets — and infrastructure like data centres and communication networks, his research found that the relative contribution of ICT to the total global footprint is expected to grow from about one per cent in 2007 to 3.5 per cent by 2020 – and reach 14 per cent by 2040.
That’s more than half the relative contribution of the entire transportation sector worldwide.
Like farting cows, the mobile phone is the silent greenhouse gas emitter that threatens us all…