Contribution of ICT to Climate Targets of Cities — Exploring the potential of Information and Communication Technologies in reducing emissions and energy use from buildings and travel
Licentiate thesis in Planning and Decision Analysis, KTH Royal Institute of Technology
ISSN:1653-6126, TRITA-SoM 2012:12
This thesis examines how ICT solutions can assist in lowering energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from buildings and travel in order to help cities meet their climate targets. It also provides an overview of relevant research intended to furnish new knowledge about the issues involved and to find solutions to social problems.
The first part of the thesis provides an analysis and compilation of critical system boundaries that need to be used for cities to set targets for energy use and GHG emissions. The climate targets of cities are dependent on setting system boundaries and establishing methods of calculations for monitoring whether the targets have been achieved. Today, there is no official standard for how the system boundaries must be set or what calculation methodologies to apply to evaluate the climate targets. Four main categories of system boundaries were identified: the temporal scope, the object of target setting, the unit of target setting, and the target range (e.g. consumer-producer and lifecycle perspective). Eight European cities were examined in relation to how they set climate targets. The examination showed that awareness of what is included in the targets is limited and that there is a need for standardised and consistent protocols and methods of setting climate targets for cities.
In the second part of the thesis, leading Advanced Traveller Information Systems (ATIS) and their functionalities were investigated. The relationship between individual decisions on different travel modes and functionalities of ATIS was investigated through a systematic investigation of the functionality of nine ATIS, mainly from Sweden, Germany, UK and USA. This allowed decisions that could lead to lower energy use and emissions of GHG to be identified. It also resulted in a proposal on requirements for new and improved functionality that could support a reduction in energy use and GHG emissions and a shift to renewable energy sources if implemented in next-generation ATIS.
In the third part of the thesis, ICT applications that can be used to reduce energy use and GHG emissions of buildings within the already built environment were identified. In addition, a brief analysis was made of how different actors such as the tenant, the building owner and the energy provider can reduce energy usage in buildings by means of ICT solutions.