Monitoring of Life Cycle Data to Determine the Environmental Impact of Information and Communication Technology Products



Ewe, Chris



Arndt, Hans-Knud






The awareness for sustainability has constantly increased in the last decades. Influenced by environmental, social and economic elements, a sustainable development is driven by the sense of meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. At the center of this thinking is the environmental protection aspect. Increasing numbers of people are interested in the impact of human behavior on the planet’s ongoing condition. One major consequence of a progressive pollution of the environment is climate change and its related issues such as an increase in extreme weather events. The majority of scientific and governmental authorities agrees that the planet’s current warming is triggered by human-caused greenhouse gases (GHGs) such as carbon dioxide. Especially companies emit a large range of those gases while manufacturing their products. This also applies to goods of the information and communication technology (ICT) industry. Throughout their entire life cycle, from raw materials to production, transportation, customer usage and end-of-life, ICT products and their processes should be designed to have a preferably low environmental impact. Along the product life cycle (PLC), a huge amount of environmentally related data is produced. Accurately analyzing and reporting this data would help companies to decide more reasonably how to influence their footprint. Based on the scientific fields of Environmental Informatics and Green IT, with the core discipline of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), this paper aims to use Business Intelligence (BI) to monitor the environmental impacts of ICT products. Using the example of product data published by Apple Inc., a model will be created to answer detailed questions regarding the GHG and material impact of Apple’s product portfolio. This approach will subsequently be assessed and modified to create a generalized model that can be used by other ICT companies to gather, prepare, analyze, report, communicate, and therefore monitor the environmental impact of their products. Thus, the model will enable ICT companies to decide more reasonable how to influence their footprints and foster the environmental protection aspect of sustainability by supporting the LCA methodology.




pdfMasterarbeit Chris Ewe.pdf