The environmental business benefits of ITAM have historically taken a back seat compared to cost savings and compliance, but the unequivocal evidence of climate change is forcing the world to take a look at the damage being done and take action.
A mature ITAM practice has the power to make a real impact in terms of corporate social responsibility, environmental impact, and energy costs.
I believe every single IT Asset Manager can make a positive impact on energy consumption and sustainability.
We can all do our bit.
Small changes to our everyday corporate habits will lead to massive change. Moreover, sustainable choices are commonly the smartest economic choice too.
In this article I’ll highlight how we as IT Asset Managers can contribute to take action on the planet.
The United Nations Paris Agreement is a commitment by nearly 200 countries to address climate change.
“The Paris Agreement’s long-term temperature goal is to keep the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 °C (3.6 °F) above pre-industrial levels; and to pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5 °C (2.7 °F), recognizing that this would substantially reduce the risks and impacts of climate change.”
To contribute towards this, two of the UN’s global goals are particularly relevant to the management of IT:
Specifically, for IT Asset Management, we are advised to “encourage companies to adopt sustainable practices and sustainable reporting” (12.6) and “promote sustainable public procurement practices” (12.7).
Specifically, for IT Asset Management, we are advised to “Build knowledge and capacity to meet climate change” (13.3) and “Integrate climate change measures into policies and planning” (13.2).
On a European level, the EU’s stated aim is to be “the first climate-neutral continent by 2050”. Key initiatives in the Green Deal are to “boost the efficient use of resources by moving to a clean, circular economy” and “restore biodiversity and cut pollution”.
Electronics and ICT are included within the Circular Economy Action plan.
Notably for Asset Managers, expect further legislation in these areas to support the Green Deal:
An example of this in action was published by DEFRA last month. DEFRA is the UK government’s department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Their “ICT and digital services strategy” is aligned to the UN Sustainable Development goals mentioned earlier.
A DEFRA stated aim is to “5.1 Report on the annual percentage improvement in the procurement of remanufactured/refurbished ICT promoting multiple usage lifecycles”. Or in layman’s terms – reusing or upgrading their existing kit so they don’t need to buy new. A great start but what else could IT Asset Managers do to contribute towards the sustainability of their IT environment?
Click to enlarge the image below to see some smarter decisions IT Asset Managers could make or influence throughout the IT Asset Lifecycle. This is just a first rough draft – If there are any other sustainable strategies you would recommend for IT Asset Managers please leave a comment below or contact me (Contact form, LinkedIn).
Are you interested in learning more about how IT Asset Managers can contribute positively towards climate change? Do you have success stories, experiences to share or would otherwise like to get involved?
WG21, the voluntary group that builds 19770 ITAM standards, is launching a study group to investigate the business impact of ITAM on energy consumption and sustainability.
UN International Resource Panel
United Nations Global Goals: